A glass that’s 10 percent full.
A basketball player who makes just 10 percent of her free throws.
An organization that achieves just 10 percent of their annual fundraising goal.
Without context, 10 percent of most things doesn’t seem much. But it does when you consider this: according to the Pew Research Center, one out of every 10 U.S. veterans alive today – that’s 10 percent – was seriously injured while serving in the military. A staggering 75% of those injuries occurred in combat.
In terms of raw numbers, that amounts to 2.2 million veterans who currently suffer from a service-connected disability.
Providing disabled veterans with a new “leash” on life and addressing PTSD
Staying true to its vision of making people’s lives better, as well as the steadfast belief that Trident is, more than anything else, a people business at its very core, the company is partnering with the nonprofit entity, K9s for Warriors, to help put an end to veteran suicide and make sobering statistics like those above a thing of the past.
"Trident has so many employees who are veterans themselves, or employees with friends and family who are veterans," said Analise Gonzales, Ventures and Specialty Brands Director, Trident Seafoods.
“When you think about the fact that nearly 20% of post-9/11 veterans suffer from PTSD, you realize there’s a good chance that includes someone you personally know.”
As a 501(c)(3) organization determined to help end veteran suicide, K9s for Warriors provides highly trained service dogs to military veterans suffering from PTSD, traumatic brain injuries and other military-related traumas. To date, the organization has graduated more than 800 K9-teams and rescued nearly 2,000 dogs overall. With the majority of dogs coming from high-kill rescue shelters, the program allows for both the K9 and veteran to build an unwavering bond that helps their collective healing and recovery.
“This partnership was a no-brainer for us,” added Gonzales. ”Our industry partner, the Genuine Alaska Pollock Producers (GAPP), helped make it possible. Helping those who selflessly serve their country through a program that connects them with service dogs, aligns perfectly with how we strive to care for each other like family, and do the right thing."
Say ‘hello’ to “Finn!”
Support for the K9s for Warriors program ensures that a veteran in need – also known as a “Warrior” – will be paired with and supported by a highly-trained service dog. In Trident’s case, the company’s support will help train a black Labrador Retriever named, appropriately enough, ”Finn.”
For three weeks, Finn and his Warrior will take part in an in-house training program provided at no cost to the participant. K9s for Warriors provides the dog, housing, all meals, equipment, veterinary care and training in an environment that provides additional peer-to-peer support. The three-week training period is intended to teach the veteran how to use their service dog, and to facilitate the bonding necessary for the two to be a successful team.
As a charity with a 4-star rating on Charity Navigator, K9s for Warriors uses treatment backed by research from Purdue University’s OHAIRE Lab, demonstrating service dogs’ ability to help mitigate their veterans’ symptoms of PTSD while simultaneously restoring their confidence and independence.
“Finn has an important job to do,” said Gonzales. “With Veterans Day quickly approaching, I can’t think of a better way to honor those who have served than by giving back in ways that benefit the most at-risk members of our veteran community."
As for Finn, if there’s any question as to whether he’s a pup that’s up to the task, we’ll let him speak for himself:
Finally, I get to say hi! There's been a lot on my mind, but I didn't know who to share it with. First things first, have you noticed the weather lately? It was like an endless summer out here but then POOF, autumn was like “Surprise, I'm here!” Seriously, when those leaves transform from pale gray to this deep, moody shade, usually that's nature's way of telling us it's about to get chilly.
Oh, and guess what? Just last week, I had this adventure at the watering hole. I saw these winged creatures, some folks and even fellow doggos! And, oh my dog, some mouthwatering grub was lying there on the ground. I was tempted, oh so tempted, to snatch a bite, but I held back because I got a firm "no" from my human. Fingers crossed, it'll be there the next time we visit; that aroma was irresistible!
But now, I've got to get back to my training. I'll catch up with you later, my new friend.
Wags and Kisses,