The Loop Newspaper - Tehachapi's Online Community News & Entertainment Guide

By Dorothy McReynolds
TCTs Chair of Publicity 

Canine Companions for Independence delivers life-changing freedom

TCT Spotlight


Here is lovely Melissa Billingsley from Canine Companions for Independence (CCI) with her amazing service pup "Hiltie" during their visit to the beautiful BeeKay Theater.

Hiltie's job? "Hearing Dog" for Melissa. After Hiltie was 'puppy raised' by volunteer Paul Sandberg, she was then trained as a hearing dog by CCI. Hiltie, and all of CCI's pups are custom trained for the special needs of those individuals who will receive these beautiful dogs. In Hiltie's case, she is Melissa's right hand gal in assisting with life sounds that many of us take for granted. Anything from the timer going off in a microwave to an all-out fire alarm!

To discover what CCI does to enrich the lives of those with special challenges, check out The unique part of their outreach? After all of CCI's hard work and dedication (with a cost to them of $50,000 per pup) they present their trained companions to those with special needs for absolutely no cost! So please visit their website to see all that they do, and perhaps attend one of their 'graduation ceremonies' to get the feel of their outstanding contribution to humanity.

The Tehachapi Community Theater was so impressed with the work of CCI, that they donated 60 show time tickets for their next production, "The Drowsy Chaperone", opening August 4, 2017.

In case you discover that you have a heart for the kind of work CCI does, to quote Melissa, "CCI is always looking for good puppy raisers"! Puppy Raisers have the pups for 18 months, and then turn them over to CCI for vocational training. Thank you, Melissa, for being such a great representative of this beautiful and life-rewarding work! Remember:

Dorothy McReynolds is Chair of Publicity for Tehachapi Community Theater


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