Waiting for a New Beginning
Imagine you are 19 years old, the fourth of six children in a military family that has moved around all your life. The five years you’ve lived in Crestview, Fla. is the longest you’ve settled in any one place. You’ve just finished high school while simultaneously earning your AA degree and should be starting college at Florida State University in a couple of months, with the academic credits of a junior. It will be your first experience away from home.
But you are stuck. The risk of contracting the Covid-19 virus meant home confinement for months, and there are more questions than answers about getting to college this fall.
And you are also blind.
Waiting for her Hero
Meet Kennedy Brown, who is waiting for her Southeastern Guide Dogs class so she can be matched with her very own four-legged hero.
Kennedy has albinism, which causes night blindness and depth perception issues. “Everything looks really far away,” she explains. Unable to drive like her peers, Kennedy relies on walking, which is uncomfortable in new places. “A guide dog is going to be an extra step of confidence to walk around and to be more sure of myself,” she notes. “If I have a guide dog, it will make me more independent and I’ll have a happier life.”
“I’m excited just knowing that I will get a dog and fantasizing of what I will get to do and how much fun it’s going to be to go out and live without fear of getting hit by cars,” she says. “Just to be my own person.”
A View to the Future
Pushing past her limited vision, Kennedy recently became a filmmaker. Staying up until 4 a.m. to edit a horror film for school cemented her career plans. “I love theater, movies, and TV and creating that alternate universe…” she gushes. “I hope to just work with creative people and make amazing film and TV shows and maybe have my own production company someday.”
Meanwhile, she waits for that magic phone call from Southeastern Guide Dogs that will transform her life. “It’s a bit nerve-wracking, knowing that a guide dog can change my life for the better.”
Guide dogs are a lifeline to freedom and hope. They are best friends and secret keepers. They are givers of hugs and endless affection. They help people find the confidence they need to live their best life now. These dogs are family.
The waiting list for one of our dogs is long, and your support today will change the world for someone like Kennedy who is hoping for a dog of her own. So, please… make a difference—donate now.