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Welcoming Israel's 2 Legged and 4 Legged Heroes IDF Veteran Benzi & Svc Dog Lugo

Friday, April 5, 2024 26 Adar II 5784

10:00 AM - 11:00 AMCOA


"I have seen things and done things that no one should ever see or do. It's very dark, but because of Lugo, I'm seeing colors again, the air is fresher, and I'm beginning to return to life."

Founded in 1991, the Israel Guide Dog Center for the Blind serves Israel’s 24,000 blind and visually impaired and is the only internationally accredited guide dog program in the Middle East. The Israel Guide Dog Center is one of the greatest organizations you never heard about!

Although it started operations in 1991, it is still a relatively well-kept secret. We want to raise awareness of the needs of people with blindness, emotional trauma, and social needs, and how their dogs address these issues – and truly change people’s lives.

Benzi served in an elite IDF Special Forces unit over 30 years ago. When discharged, he had a good job, got married, and had children. But Benzi suffered from "an invisible injury." He successfully pushed his traumatic experiences deep down for many years, until he snapped. Benzi flew into a rage as the emotions came rushing back. He became depressed and even attempted suicide. He sought therapy but needed more. That's when it was suggested that he get a PTSD service dog from the Israel Guide Dog Center.

In early 2022, Benzi was partnered with Lugo, and immediately felt some of the stress leave his body. Suddenly, he had a new supportive best friend. Now when he has a nightmare or flashback, Lugo springs into action, licking Benzi's face and snapping him out of the episode.

When Benzi tells his story, Lugo feels his stress levels rising, and begins nudging Benzi's legs while seeking attention. As Benzi pets Lugo, he calms down. The change is remarkable. Benzi's quality of sleep has improved, and his attitude has changed. Because of Lugo, he has been able to reconnect with his loved ones and is optimistic that his life is changing for the better.

Join us on Friday, April 5th at 10:00 AM to hear their remarkable story.

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Mon, April 22 2024 14 Nisan 5784