MAYNARD - The WBZ-TV Ice Cream Social is a good time for everyone and that includes Melissa and her guide dog Lowell.
They're part of the Guiding Eyes for the Blind community. It's a national non-profit organization with a local chapter in Maynard. They train and provide dogs for people with vision loss
"Guiding Eyes has given me dogs, that have met my needs every time. Especially, each dog has fallen at the right time for the right reasons," Melissa, a Guiding Eyes graduate, told WBZ-TV.
The volunteers are the fabric of this non-profit. They spend months raising, training and socializing the puppies, so they can graduate to guide dogs.
"We literally cannot do what we do without our volunteers. So our staff-to-volunteer ratio is about 1 staff for 10 volunteers and on our side, we have about 450 puppy raisers and 14 staff," Kerry Lemeris, the program manager for Guiding Eyes for the Blind, told WBZ.
"To know that we are helping guide them in that way. So that they are eventually going to guide someone else. It's pretty amazing," said Lisa Bumbalo, the regional puppy instructor.
So it makes all the sense in the world that WBZ viewers wanted to throw this group a party, with the help of Erikson's Ice Cream.
"To be able to see these animals help other people. We just love dogs and it's a great organization," said Irene Fraser of Erikson's.
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