This project will create a place in Mindelo, Sao Vicente, Cape Verde, to practice pet therapy with handicapped people of any age. On Sao Vicente there are not many opportunities for handicapped people to have a social life and to practice free-time activities. SIMABO will offer them an occasion to socialize and to overcome the negative impact of isolation. In the same time, more families will be made aware of the importance to have a pet at home, and more people will get professional training.
There are almost 500 handicapped people of any kind on Sao Vicente and a high number of elderly people who don't have a social life. As a consequence of this, most of them, especially handicapped adults and older people, live in isolation, just waiting for the time to be put to bed at night. Not being able to take care of a pet themselves, they rarely can have one as a companion at home. This deprives these disadvantaged people of a very important kind of support, both emotional and cognitive.
Our Pet Theraphy Center will offer to handicapped people of any age and to elderly people an occasion to overcome the negative impact of isolation. The pet therapy sessions will provide social and mental stimulation, they will help raise self-esteem among those with disabilities and distract patients from their illness or condition. Walking, caring and grooming animals will improve and maintain movement and cognitive function, encourage expression, communication and language, relieving stress.
Interacting with a friendly pet reduces stress and anxiety, leading to calm and relaxed situations and better health. At least 100 families can obtain an economic advantage in terms of reduced expenses for drugs or other therapies. The families might also understand the importance of having a pet at home, so more rescued animals from our shelters might get adopted and be saved from PTS in the Municipal kennel. In addition, at least three people will get professional training and a qualified job.