Still supporting Guide Dogs – 20 years on!
Seeing the way a Guide Dog opened up the world for her aunt inspired Anne Harris and her husband Michael to commit their time and energy to Guide Dogs Tasmania, and some 20 years later, they’re still giving!
Anne’s aunt, Fay, began losing her sight as a child but it wasn’t until she was in her 60sthat she was given her first Guide Dog. Fay then encouraged Michael, an accountant, to attend our Annual General Meeting and from there, he soon found himself as Chairman of Royal Guide Dogs Tasmania, working for more than 10 years to set the organisation on a sound financial footing.
“I could see what a great asset [Guide Dog Jaimie] was to my aunt,” says Anne. “She gained just an amazing amount of mobility with her dog. I thought if I can do that for someone else, – and have fun in the meantime – that would be really good.”
So when she began planning for retirement – and worried that that she might be bored – Anne decided to become a Guide Dog puppy raiser, and welcomed Nelson, a beautiful black Labrador, into their home in 2014.
She has since shared puppy raising duties for Harmony, and boarded puppies while their raisers are away.
Michael remains a committed donor and Anne is looking forward to boarding some of our lovely dogs again soon.
“I really miss it when I don’t have a dog, but what I miss most is the social interaction they create,” she says
“If you get into a lift in town, it might be full of people, but everyone just ignores everyone else … but you walk in with a guide dog in tow, all of a sudden, everyone starts chattering, and it’s just wonderful.”