Give a Dog a Bone…and an animal a home turns 10!

Nov 27, 2023 | Latest News

On Monday 20th November, ‘Give a Dog a Bone…and an animal a home’ turned 10!

We thought we’d take a quick look back at where it all began…and what’s been achieved in between!

Louise Russell, a working mum, had an idea to tackle loneliness for older adults and help some rescue animals at the same time!

On 20th November 2013 the idea was given charitable status and ‘Give a Dog a Bone… and an animal a home’ (charity number SC044440) was born!

The key project was to provide financial support to the over 60s, who needed a financial helping hand to adopt a rescue pet companion.

It’s a WIN/WIN – the person gets a friend, and the animal gets a home!

This idea proved popular with supporters and the charity gained some momentum over the first few years – with people engaging with fundraising activities and spreading word of the unique mission of GADAB.

As time progressed, Louise recognised that whilst some older adults may LOVE animals – for whatever reason – they may not want/be able to have one of their own and that the original project was not tackling this…

So, in January 2018, backed by the Trustees, Louise launched a second project. ‘Companionship in the Community’ – a safe space where older adults can come to make new friends, learn new skills and mix with dogs 😊

The proposition: a free cuppa and biscuit, the chance to take part in free activities, access to a listening ear and a waggy tail…

Shawlands opened in January 2018 and, based on its success, was quickly followed by Troon later the same year. The charity won funding to open the 3rd community space and Alloa launched in late February 2020.

A busy community space, with people sat round tables and a golden retriever beside them.

Last year, we welcomed over 12,500 people through our doors and this year is looking even busier!

We offer free classes and activities for the over 60s such as *Self Care Fridays; Seated Yoga, Art Club and Reflexology.

We also host Group Dog Walks*, enabling participants to come together for a gentle stroll, some good company and the opportunity to walk a dog!

A group of people and dogs walking towards some trees, with the sun shining through.

Over the years, our founder has won many awards, including the Prime Minister’s Point of Light Award and Pride of Scotland Community Hero award.

Most recently, she was named in the King’s Honours List (2023) as a Medallist of the Order of the British Empire (BEM).

In May 2023, the team travelled to Telford, as the only Scottish finalists, for the Pet Plan Awards – ‘Animal Charity Team of the Year’.

Eight staff members from Team Give a Dog a Bone photographed standing in front of a white background with blue Petplan logo text printed all over it. The team are holding their Petplan and ADCH Animal Charity Team of the Year 2023 finalist plaque.

Our original project of supporting the over 60s to afford a rescue pet companion continues…  and we are proud to support many low income households – each month – with a financial helping hand towards their pet companion.

Our 10th birthday was an important milestone to reflect on how far GADAB has come over the years.

All three of our community spaces hosted a ‘birthday party’ for our older adult beneficiaries to celebrate this occasion.

A white birthday cake with blue writing that says "happy 10th birthday Give a Dog a Bone...and an animal a home", beside some chocolate and vanilla cupcakes.

If you supported GADAB in any way over the past 10 years – we’d like to say THANK YOU!

We quite simply could not have done it without you xxx


*Please contact your local community space to see what activities are on offer, as these may differ from location to location

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