(GEORGINA, ON – September 25, 2023) – Today, CNIB Guide Dogs unveiled the new site of its first-ever puppy development centre in the Town of Georgina.
Since launching in 2017, CNIB Guide Dogs has quickly become a leader in the guide dog community. As part of the program's expansion, CNIB Guide Dogs has purchased three acres of land in the Town of Georgina on Lake Simcoe, where they’ll build the Howard & Delores Beck Puppy Development Centre.
“We believe every Canadian who needs or wants a guide dog should have that opportunity at no cost, and the Howard & Delores Beck Puppy Development Centre will help make even more guide dog partnerships possible,” says Diane Bergeron, President, CNIB Guide Dogs.
The forthcoming centre, to be located at 4907 Baseline Road, will be a state-of-the-art facility that will not only support, socialize and train future CNIB guide dogs, but will also serve as a community space for residents to learn more about guide dogs and blindness. There will also be opportunities for members of the Georgina community to work with dogs and volunteer.
“We've already received such a warm welcome from the Georgina community. We’re so excited to be here and look forward to getting to know our new neighbours, and inviting them to visit or volunteer with our program when the facility is complete,” says Bergeron.
Whether avoiding obstacles, stopping at curbs and steps, or negotiating traffic, guide dogs foster independence for their handlers. The process of becoming a guide dog begins before birth, with dogs that are bred to have the physical and behavioural traits that make them best for the work.
The site of the future Howard & Delores Beck Puppy Development Centre is currently undergoing assessments and permit approvals. CNIB Guide Dogs hopes to have shovels in the ground by the end of 2024.
About CNIB Guide Dogs
At CNIB Guide Dogs, we raise, train and match dogs with Canadians who are blind or partially sighted. We also raise our voices to ensure people with sight loss have opportunities to live, work and play without barriers. We’re committed to ensuring social attitudes shift to universal acceptance and appreciation for guide dogs. We also provide advocacy support for guide dog handlers across Canada, regardless of where their dogs are trained. For more information about CNIB Guide Dogs, visit cnibguidedogs.ca.
Founded in 1918, CNIB is a non-profit organization driven to change what it is to be blind today. We deliver innovative programs and powerful advocacy that empower people impacted by blindness to live their dreams and tear down barriers to inclusion. Our work is powered by a network of volunteers, donors, and partners from coast to coast to coast. To learn more or get involved, visit cnib.ca.
Manager, Marketing and Communications, CNIB
C: 437-922-7353 | Karin.McArthur@cnib.ca