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  • Aliya Bhatia

National fundraising event for guide dogs goes virtual this weekend

The annual Walk for Dog Guides will be a little different this year, but you can join the fundraiser virtually from anywhere across Canada this Sunday.

With a ban on large gatherings continuing due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many fundraising events have faced cancellation this year.


But, where there’s a will, there’s a way, and for the annual Pet Valu Walk for Guide Dogs, they’ve decided to take the event virtual this year.


The much-loved charitable event for dog guides is taking place on Sunday, May 31, 2020, with 100% of the proceeds from the virtual walk going to the Lions Foundation of Canada Dog Guides.


To get involved, participants are encouraged to walk, dance, run, bike, use the stairs, jump on a trampoline, or do anything physical (indoors or outside) to promote the foundation’s mission and raise funds.


ALSO READ: Vancouver dogs find new homes due to COVID-19

Maria Galindo, Communications Manager at The Lions Foundation of Canada Dog Guides, explains why getting involved in the Virtual Walk for Dog Guides is more important than ever this year.


“These have been really difficult times for everyone, and Dog Guides is no exception," Galindo tells PawSwap.

"Financially, we depend on the support of the public and corporations and as you can imagine, donations have decreased significantly during these difficult times.


“The Pet Valu Virtual Walk for Dog Guides is a vital annual fundraiser for us," adds Galindo. "We depend heavily on this event in order to continue to support our active graduates and breed, train and place more future Dog Guides with someone with a medical or physical disability at no cost.”

The national fundraiser has been held annually for over 34 years, and as always, this year's walk will have no registration fee or minimum donation required. Instead, the charity has asked for the community to spread the word through social media by sharing how they are getting involved.


They ask all participants to use the hashtag #VirtualWalkforDogGuides and to tag them, @LFCDogGuides and their national sponsor @PetValu.


The organization continues to support over 1,200 active graduates across Canada and over 300 foster families during COVID-19, with each Dog Guide costing approximately $25,000 from birth until it is placed with its handler.


Galindo explains that "now more than ever, we need the public’s support so that when things go back to normal, we can go back to helping more Canadians with a medical or physical disability."

Anyone can sign up for the virtual walk at www.walkfordogguides.com to help us cover the costs of these four-legged heroes.