The North Star Foundation

As we prepare for the change in both seasons and temperatures, now is the time to self-reflect and let go of the things that do not serve us anymore. If you do not like something within yourself, do not just discard or ignore it. Instead identify it, embrace it, and discover the root reason of what you dislike. Turn that negativity into positivity and learn to love yourself fully despite any flaws that you see. You are indeed perfect. 

For the month of October we at The Crystal Council would like to bring awareness to the unique relationship between children and therapy dogs. In the past, we have worked with a foundation called North Star and would like to share the amazing work their founder Patty Dobbs Gross and  her team across the United States do. 

North Star Foundation is a nonprofit organization started in 2000 and is dedicated to helping children who face social and emotional challenges. These challenges stem from developmental differences such as Autism, Down Syndrome, and Epilepsy. 

It starts with a well bred and socialized North Star assistance or therapy dog that is educated during its first six months of life with trained handlers. They create unique kid/canine partnerships by employing local certified trainers to work with their specially bred and carefully socialized North Star dogs. This results in the forming of teams that start with and include children. 

The education is then transferred to the families of the children, who become partners in training the dogs to meet their child's specific needs. North Star staff remains available for support, with frequent visits, telephone calls, and e-mails. Families are asked to enroll in a training class that emphasizes positive reinforcement techniques. This helps to deal with the adolescent dog's desire to push the limits he or she has previously accepted with good-natured puppy charm. Because of the network of handlers and the families early involvement in training, it decreases the cost to provide a therapy dog to children.  Patty’s son was on the autism spectrum and grew up with an assistance dog so she knows first hand the benefits as well as the challenges with training. 

This month's charity stone is Yellow Aventurine. This beautiful yellow toned crystal from the Quartz family will allow one to build inner strength with self reflection and awareness. It assists with opening up the sacral chakra to bring balance to the body. It is a stone for creativity in helping one to gain confidence in experimenting with different forms of expression. All proceeds from the purchase of this crystal will be donated to North Star foundation.