Tag Archives: Service Dogs

The Ripple Effect

Hi everyone!

Our primary purpose is to help those in need by providing them with service dogs and empowering them to live a life of fulfillment and become an integral part of society.  What inevitably happens though is a ripple effect.

Take for example Jason Owens.  Jason was diagnosed with Neurofibromatosis Type II in 1996.   It is a genetic disorder that causes hundreds of tumors to grow throughout the body’s Central Nervous System.   Unfortunately, for now, there is no cure available and treatment is done on individual tumors via radiation or removal.

You can imagine that this is not an enjoyable process.  Jason has had approximately a dozen surgeries since 1996.   The most serious surgery was in 2007 when he had a golf ball size brain tumor removed.

After a year of physical therapy, he was left with weakness in his legs, loss of balance, and deaf.    Unable to perform his duties at work, he lost his job and went on long term disability.

He currently has tumors on his spine that effect his strength and dexterity in his hands.   His long term prognoses is several more surgeries ahead as the disease progresses.

One of the most unfortunately effects of Jason’s situation is that as a husband and father of two, he cannot enjoy the full mobility that others take for granted.  Fortunately, the love and support of his family has kept him strong and forward looking.  With the help of a service dog though, his life would be enriched even more.

A service dog will not only help Jason, he or she will also help Jason’s family.  A service dog will help empower Jason, helping him in many ways and enabling him to be less dependent on his family.  His family then would also be able to help Jason in other ways and be able to spend more time enjoying the life they have together.  This change will also then create a ripple effect with all those they see and know.

Here’s Jason with his family during the holidays.

Jason Owens and his family

Sometimes we are so focused on one individual that we often forget the kind of value a service dog can have on that individual’s family and friends.

Help us raise the money we need to get Jason a service dog.

Simply click on the donate button on the right or click right here to make a donation today.

We appreciate your support and we know Jason and his family does too.


Raising Hope With Your Help!

Alex and Hope are running two half Marathons this year to raise funds to train two service puppies to help two humans that really need them… and we need YOUR help!

There are two ways you can help!

Make A Donation:

We are always looking for donations to help Hope is Mine spread the word and awareness about service dogs and to help in getting dogs trained to help others in need.  You can simply click on the donate button on the right or go to our Fundraising page at http://www.firstgiving.com/hopeismine.

Run With Hope:

You can run in one of both of the marathons, have your friends and family sponsor you and make a huge difference to this great cause.

Here are the details of the two Half-Marathons.  Support the cause and help us raise the funds we need to help others in need.

The Disneyland® Half marathon on September 2nd 2012 in California.

The Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon on November 9th in Orlando.

Those who finish both are eligible for a third medal called the Coast to Coast Challenge so Hope is “hoping” to add three medals to her proud of me wall this year!  With your help, there’s no doubt she’ll be able to do it!

If you are interested in running either or both of the half marathons above, you need to do the following;

  1. Register on the Disney site for the marathon(s) you are interested in participating in. When you register make sure you say that you are on team “Hope is Mine”
  2. Register for free at www.firstgiving.com/hopeismine  (not active yet), fill out your profile and start to tell everyone that you are running and ask for their support.
  3. Join our Face Book page https://www.facebook.com/HopeIsMine and let us know how your training and fundraising is going. Remember we are all in this together so this will be a great source of support for you!
  4. Make sure to book your travel and accommodations early. We will probably do something as a group before and after the race so watch for details (coming soon!).
  5. If you have any talents or expertise you can donate to help make this an even greater success let us know! This is going to be a rocking event that we “Hope” to do every year, so help us make this first one a resounding success!

Be on the lookout for more information about these events.  In the mean time, please help us spread the word and raise some money.  Hope springs eternal with all of your support!


More Exciting News! Your Help Is Appreciated!

Last year, Alex and Hope created history by being the first person with a service dog to run a  half marathon.  How exciting!  History in the making.  This year, they’re going to repeat their famous run again in the Las Vegas Rock & Roll marathon on December 4th by running the Half marathon again!  (Please come on out and cheer them on!)

So none of that is really news since we’ve told you that a while back.  Here’s the more exciting news part…

They’re going to create history again!

On January 7, 2012, they’ll be continuing their streak of awesomeness by doing the FULL Running from the Angel marathon on Jan 7, 2012 at Lake Mead


That’s right!  They’ll be there be the first person with a service dog to run a FULL Marathon – making history again!!  Whoo Hoo!

Hey, this is a fantastic event and Channel 3 will be covering their training and the races every step of the way!

And just as a reminder, why are they doing this?  Why are they working their behinds off to create these historic events?  So that they can raise money to provide service dogs to those in need and empower people to reach their full potential.  So if you haven’t done so yet, make sure you click that donate button on the website and help us achieve our goals.  Donations are very much appreciated and please make sure you help us spread the news as well.

You too can achieve what you put your mind too when you have Hope in your life.


They’re Doing It Again!

Let’s make history a second time!  Come out and support Alex and Hope as they repeat their history making run in the Las Vegas Marathon.  This time they’ll be Stripping at Night… we mean On The Strip At Night!

And if you’re saying, “Well, that’s not really making history again, they’ve already done it.”  Then think again!

They’re running the FULL marathon this time!  That’s right!  They’re not fooling around this time!

This will be the first time ever that a Service Dog and her handler will be running a FULL marathon – again – History in the making!  Part 2!!!

This is VERY exciting!  Channel 3 will be filming Alex and Hope as they train and you can follow their training progress on Facebook and Twitter!

Come out and support them as they’re going to need your energy and cheers to make it through!

And don’t forget, donations are always welcome as they are doing this to raise money for those who need Service Dogs throughout the area!

Join them as the

Date: Sunday, December 4, 2011
Start and Finish Locations: Mandalay Bay

For more details, go to http://stripatnight.com/

This is expected to be the World’s Largest Nighttime Event, so you definitely want to be there and be part of the fun!

Letter From Our Friend Rachel

Growing up, dogs were always in my life. I would play dress up with them, tell them all my secrets and complete with them in obedience competitions. Even at a young age, I knew that someday I would train dogs for a special purpose.

During my senior of high school, I was trying to find out how I can train service dogs. I looked into a couple of schools. Some of the schools wanted you to be a puppy raiser and the other school wanted you to have a few years of dog training skills before you apply. Here I was 19 years old…….I have only trained my dogs and I didn’t want to be a puppy raiser, I wanted to train dogs from start to finish.

After graduation, I moved to Roswell Georgia to be a nanny. It is there I found my dream job! A service dog school that was fairly new and needed volunteer trainers. While the children I cared for were at school, I would go to the school and train the dogs during the day. I found myself there at night too, training other volunteers how to train service dogs. In 1996, after my two year contract was complete, I started working as a full time trainer for this organization.

When I started at that school, there were only 12 dogs and they were house in the basement. By the time I left that school, 10 years later, they had over 150 dogs on sight and 2 buildings that housed the dogs. I will never forget the people I worked with, the dogs I got to train and all the lives that I changed with my dogs.

When I first started working full time, I wrote the founder a letter. Thanking her for this wonderful opportunity and also letting her know that it was my dream to one day to train service dogs in Indiana. In 2005, it was time. If I was ever going to start my own business, now was the time to do it. February 16, 2005, Northern Indiana Service Dogs, LLC was up and going.

Here you go Alex….why I got started training dogs….A little about me.

I also sent you a note about NISD and the Nevada badge

Helping Those In Need


The Hope Is Mine Foundation was founded on the idea of helping those in need. We are advocates for those who need our help as even a little help goes a long way. Through education and fundraising, we promote awareness of Service Dogs and the quality of life they provide their partners. We assist in raising funds for service dog placement and provide training and strategies to educate corporations, small businesses, and our communities nationwide. We seek to empower individuals to live a life of greatness regardless of any physical limitations.


Our Mission is to train and educate corporations, small businesses, and communities nationwide on the inspiration, motivation, and life changing impact service dogs have upon the physically disabled. We intend to place service dogs for those in need throughout the country. We will also provide hope and strength to enrich the lives of individuals with life-threatening medical conditions and their families by granting them their life’s true wish.

Our Vision is to provide hope and eliminate personal limitations for individuals who are physically disabled and enable them to become an integral part of society and inspire others to greatness themselves. There should be no limitation on greatness even if there are physical limitations on life.

“I want everyone to know that anything is possible. You can do whatever you want-it’s just how bad you want it. Never think that you have to live with somebody else’s expectations. You don’t. What you do with your life is up to you, and you’re the only one who can limit it.”

— Alex Dumas, Hope Is Mine Foundation Co-founder