Saving Dogs with a Purpose (Aired March 28 & 29, 2020)

Erich Steffensen, Special Programs Manager at the Animal Farm Foundation in Amenia, NY, is the guest for this RadioRotary Program. The Animal Farm Foundation, although it does run an actual farm with rescue farm animals, is primary concerned with dogs—especially dogs that have been called “pit bulls” because of square-shaped heads and bulky bodies, although these are generally of no recognized breed (originally their ancestors were a cross between bulldogs and terriers, but other breeds have joined the mix over the years). One of the goals of the Foundation is to help erase the bad reputation of pit bulls for aggressive behavior. The other goal is to train shelter dogs—primarily pit bulls—for three different types of service: true service dogs, narcotic-recognizing dogs, and family pets. An early part of this training is conducted by prisoners at Riker’s Island, the “Paws of Purpose” program where the dogs go from shelters to 8 weeks at the prison. Formal training for narcotics-sniffers is conducted at a site in Texas; then the trained dogs are donated to police around the nation. Service dogs, including those who aid the hearing and mobility impaired (but not seeing-eye dogs), are trained at the farm in Amenia. All the programs are free to those who adopt the dogs, whether police who take K-9 dogs, mobility or hearing impaired persons needing help, or families that just want a friendly animal. Listen to the program and learn fascinating details about how trained dogs can solve problems and even save lives.

Learn more
Animal Farm Foundation: https://animalfarmfoundation.org/
Service Dogs: https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/training/service-dog-training-101/
Myths and Facts about Pit Bulls: https://www.petfinder.com/pet-adoption/dog-adoption/myths-and-facts-about-pit-bulls/

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April 13, 2020 · Posted in Animals, Service Organizations  

40 Years of Hudson River Housing (Aired January 18 and 19, 2020)

Back in 1980, Dutchess County Executive Lucille Pattison recognized that there was a
homeless crisis in the county and appointed a Task Force to address the problem, which
resulted in the formation of Hudson River Housing and the first emergency shelter for the
homeless. This vital service has been at the heart of the program as Hudson River Housing
expanded over the years to include transitional housing; affordable apartments and houses;
housing for veterans, for youth, and for seniors; historic preservation; rehabs of existing
structures as well as new construction; employment assistance; and help for first-time home
buyers. In this program, Christa Hines, Executive Director of Hudson River Housing, tells the
story of this amazing agency and the work that it does. With a staff of 160 as well as many
volunteer workers, the Housing Agency has become central to improving Poughkeepsie—and it has extensions to Beacon and to northeastern Dutchess (Amenia, Pine Plains, and Millerton)
where there are considerable needs as well.

Learn more
Hudson River Housing: https://hudsonriverhousing.org/
Family Partnership Center: http://familyservicesny.org/family-partnership-center/
Mental Health America of Dutchess County: https://mhadutchess.org/

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Rebuilding Together Rehabilitates Homes (Aired January 11 and 12, 2020)

RadioRotary interviews Poughkeepsie South Rotary president Christina Boryk, executive
director of Rebuilding Together Dutchess County. Rebuilding Together is the nonprofit
organization (once known as “Christmas in July”) that for the past 27 years has repaired,
revitalized, and rehabilitated homes for homeowners who because of age or disability or poverty
are unable to make the necessary repairs that would make the dwelling safe and healthy. The
service is free to the homeowner. The volunteer workers install grab bars, ramps, and smoke
and carbon-dioxide alarms, and make other modifications as well as undertake minor repairs.
Larger-scale projects are handled by outside contractors. They have repaired more than 800
homes since the program started. The program is funded by state and local grants, by local
corporations such as Central Hudson, and donations.

Learn more
Rebuilding Together Dutchess County: http://www.rebuildingtogetherdutchess.org/
Rebuilding Together Dutchess on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RTDutchess/
Office for the Aging, Dutchess County: https://www.dutchessny.gov/Departments/Aging/Office-for-the-Aging.htm
National Center for Healthy Housing: https://nchh.org/build-the-movement/nshhc/
Poughkeepsie South Rotary Club: https://portal.clubrunner.ca/50045/clubinfo/poughkeepsie-south

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Sue Doyle’s Volunteer Projects (Aired December 21 and 22, 2019)

Sue Doyle of the Poughkeepsie Arlington Rotary Club was given the 2019 Tansukh Dorawala
Humanitarian Award of Rotary District 7210 for her service to the community. This RadioRotary
Program covers some of the ways that Ms. Doyle, known to regular RadioRotary listeners as
the voice of Absolute Auction & Realty, works with other volunteers in several organizations.
Fishkill Food Pantry serves about 200 families in southern Dutchess Country and Cold Spring
with 5-day emergency meals, available once every 28 days. Their healthy food is provided in
part by the Food Bank of Dutchess County but mostly by local donations directly to the pantry in
downtown Fishkill. The Animal Rescue Foundation (ARF) of Beacon is a no-kill refuge for dogs
and cats that stay until a family adopts the pet for a permanent home. Not only does ARF of
Beacon provide food and medicine for locally abandoned pets, it also collects unwanted dogs
and cats who otherwise would be killed from animal shelters across the country. In addition to
her work with the Fishkill Food Pantry and ARF of Beacon, Ms. Doyle has been an asset to the
Pleasant Valley Free Library by providing company trucks needed to move books, along with
her husband Rob Doyle will be honorary chair of the MARC Foundation 2020 Annual Dinner,
and helps her Rotary club bring assistance of Caramia Bacchiochi’s Hope on a Mission, which
provides meals each week for Poughkeepsie’s homeless population.

Learn more
Fishkill Food Pantry on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FishkillFoodPantry/
Animal Rescue Foundation of Beacon: https://www.arfbeacon.org/
ARF in Beacon on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/arfanimalrescue/
Poughkeepsie Arlington Rotary: http://rotary7210.org/arlington/index.html
MARC Foundation: https://marc-foundation.org/

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