You haven’t heard from me in a little while and it’s safe to say that it has been an emotional rollercoaster for the team here at Canine Perspective HQ.
Today, we have some incredible news to share, but it’s tinged with profound sadness.
As you no doubt know, Canine Perspective CIC began due to the success of a book, a teen fiction novel about a teenage rape survivor called Dani Moore and her rescue dog, Reggie. The dog was inspired by our team member, funnily enough, also called Reggie.
Was. Saying that is taking some getting used to.
Reggie passed away on the 19th April. He was almost twelve years old, not that that really matters. Even though I know I was blessed to have so many years with him, there’s never enough time.
I miss him.
It was only a short time ago that I was sat on the sofa with him, writing an application for an opportunity that I could only apply for because of him. Reggie inspired the book, the social enterprise and the social project, Canine Hope, that transforms the lives of rape survivors and rescue dogs.
Purina, who I’m sure you’ve heard of, were inviting applications for a Better with Pets prize, designed for social enterprises who focus their work on the human-animal bond. Canine Perspective CIC was nominated by a fellow social entrepreneur and after an initial interview, was invited to apply. There were over 100 organisations doing incredible work across Europe who were invited to apply. Two weeks after losing my boy, I found out that Canine Perspective CIC had made it through to the final ten. I just about made it through the subsequent interview, although there were tears.
I can now share the news that Canine Perspective CIC is in the final five. In early June, I will be travelling to Barcelona where I will pitch to a panel of four judges and 120 experts on behalf of Team Canine Perspective.
The only reason we have made it this far is because of the unparalleled support we have had along the way. People who really know their stuff about research, social impact and business have believed in us and our slightly bonkers idea of bringing the book to life. There’s a very long list of incredible people, but today a special thank you goes out to Chris Kent for the encouragement to start this venture in the first place, to Dr Ruth Jones OBE & Beverley Gilbert for their research to create our social impact report, Sam Haydock and the team at the School for Social Entrepreneurs and Gemma Went for her faith in me as a business person. Thank you to the charities, the social enterprises, the rescue centres, the survivors and the dogs who have trusted me to deliver this programme and helped me to make it the best it can be.
Thank you to Reggie.
Whatever happens in Barcelona, I am beyond grateful to have this opportunity. Canine Perspective CIC is the perfect legacy for my boy and I know that an exciting future lies ahead of us.