For a long time I have been aware of the work Diane does with kids with disabilities and had the opportunity to see it first hand last spring. I have a daughter with cognitive delays. She is nine, but functions at about a 3-4 year old level. It has been hard for her to fit in with her classmates and for them to feel comfortable around her. Diane heard that this was a problem for us and offered to bring Ovelle and come to school with Miranda. Before going to school, Diane spent time getting to know Miranda and letting Miranda get to know Ovelle. Miranda only says a few words and is hard to understand, but with Diane’s help, she was able to give commands that Ovelle could follow. Miranda was on top of the world! They went in to her classroom and let Miranda show off “her dog” and all the tricks Ovelle can do. For the first time in her life, Miranda was able to stand in front of her class and impress her classmates. I have never seen Miranda so proud of herself. Diane planned activities that had the kids interacting, with Miranda at the center. Diane was wonderful with the whole class and it was a great day! This was one special day given to Miranda by Diane and Ovelle, but there was also a lasting effect for Miranda. Her classmates got to see more of her personality and understand her better. They were more comfortable approaching her. After this, when I took her to class in the mornings we would be surround by her friends. As a mom, I am so grateful for what we call Miranda’s “Queen for a Day” day. But this is the type of thing that Diane and dogs for kids all the time. They are our heroes!
– Pam Gaona and Miranda