Heiress' highlight was the opportunity to provide accompaniment during a foster child's visit with her biological mother.
Here's the story! Consider yourself warned ... it's a tearjerker!
The child, a 9-year-old little girl, knew Heiress from a past visit to the CAC. She hadn't seen her biological parents in approximately 2 years, but requested a face-to-face visit as part of a transition plan toward adoption. One of her conditions for the visit was to have Heiress present. Along with the foster care social worker, Heiress & I greeted a very anxious and emotionally heightened mom .... nervous for how the visit would go and on the verge of sabotaging the chance to see her little girl. We deescalated together and maintained composure that allowed the visit to move forward.
Heiress and I then transitioned to greet a brave, resilient, spitfire of a child as she exited her foster parent's car and we stood by as she engaged with her biological mother (and bio father via facetime) for a "playdate" at a local park. Heiress and I followed along as they hugged, chatted, played on the swing-set and reminisced about the "good times" prior to the family's struggles that led to foster care placement. The visit was a success!! Prior visits had been terminated early or cancelled, altogether, due to strong, emotional behavior by the bio parent(s). I can't give all the credit to Heiress, but I also can't ignore the science and recognize the impact that a dog's presence can have on the emotional tone of the "room." Soooo, let's give Heiress a High-5 for their work with this little girl and her mom!!
While the transition to our "new assignment" at DSS has had it's challenges, this shift has allowed Heiress to reach children in a different phase of their journey toward healing. We are forever grateful for the support of the Friends of the CAC & beyond proud to share this Fall '23 success story with you!
🐾 Heiress (and Kristen)
Anyone who is familiar with the CAC knows that Heiress gives the children a great sense of comfort and helps in their healing from the trauma they've suffered from abuse. Thanks to the generosity of donors, we've purchased a mini version of Heiress for them to take home. These are already a huge hit and puts a big smile on their faces!
For an introduction to the CAC's assistance dog, Heiress, please visit the link below. County Spotlight: Heiress
Kristen Dunn, Heiress' handler, provides information of her and Heiress' roles at the CAC. Heiress is a very important member of the CAC team in supporting the children and families who experience abuse.