I have always loved dogs and before I had children I used to train them. I’m sure that in every home where the dog has been well trained, you will also find well disciplined children! I am also very involved with the School for the Blind in Gauteng, so my love of dogs and my involvement with a cause that is helping the blind came together when I committed to the sponsorship of three guide dogs for the blind. Simply put, you buy the dog and the South African Association of Guide Dogs For the Blind trains them and makes sure they find the right home with a person with a sight disability.
The system works incredibly well. I found out how well it worked when I met one of our Gauteng Finalists in my Margaret Hirsch Woman in Business Achiever of the year competition. Theresa Roberts from the Success Academy was a premature baby and slowly started going blind in her 20’s. She told me that she lost all her confidence when she found that her eyesight was going. “I lost my independence and confidence, and in 2002 when a friend suggested I get a Guide Dog, I decided to go ahead. I have never looked back!” Theresa took her dog with her to London where she did her degree., and she is now doing a masters in Project Leadership and design. She is a well known Toastmaster and after dinner spokesperson and is a member of the South African cricket team for the blind. Her greatest joy was being chosen as the South African flag-bearer in the Para Olympic Games – which she proudly attended with her faithful dog.
Theresa is pictured with her wonderful companion Kelsey.