The first six months of 2018 are in the books, and the first half of the year has been a good one for Canine Companions for Independence.
We'll start with graduate placements. All of our regions have held Team Trainings and graduation ceremonies, resulting in the placement of more than 150 assistance dogs in 2018. That puts us on track to once again place over 300 assistance dogs. And, it is important to emphasize that we do not charge recipients for their dog or for follow-up services. More than 5,800 assistance dogs have been placed since we opened our doors in 1975. By the time 2018 ends, we anticipate all-time placements will exceed 6,000. Graduation ceremonies will take place throughout the country this summer. To learn of the date, time and location of a graduation ceremony, visit us at cci.org.
Canine Companions will be in many communities this summer and fall, as Dog Fest Walk 'n Rolls continue this summer and fall. In addition, we look forward to numerous other special events that raise awareness of our organization and how we make a difference in the lives of people with disabilities.
Other noteworthy news includes the grand re-opening of our Southwest Campus in Oceanside. We anticipate breaking ground later this year on a new and much needed training building at our National headquarters and Northwest Regional Center in Santa Rosa. We also showed off the Schulz Campus in June, with the annual Sit Stay Sparkle event, which raised over $270,000 for the organization.
Canine Companions relies on thousands of volunteers to make it possible for us to do the work we do. We just concluded our annual TEAM Conference in Santa Rosa. Well over 100 volunteer leaders from across the country came to share, learn and take back to their chapters information gained from the conference. TEAM stands for Together Everyone Achieves More, and our organization knows that it takes a team to make it possible for us to provide our highly trained assistance dogs free of charge.
Two-time graduate Tammie shared that having a Canine Companions assistance dog makes it so much easier to be independent and get around in public.
We appreciate your interest in and support of Canine Companions for Independence. Thank you for helping us Give a Dog a Job. Enjoy the summer!