The SD Gunner Fund has set a fundraising goal of $5,000 to support its mission to assist veterans and disabled children with the financial expense of acquiring and owning service animals. Anyone willing to pitch in and help the nonprofit organization reach that goal will have their name entered into a drawing for a $500 Visa gift card.
Britnee Kinard created SD Gunner Fund in 2014 while caring full-time for her husband as he grappled with post-traumatic stress disorder and recovered from physical wounds sustained while serving in Iraq. As she navigated the complex process of obtaining the aid her husband is entitled to, Kinard developed a reputation as an advocate for those who face the challenge of collecting certain benefits. As the requests for help grew in frequency, Kinard sprang into action. After working for 18 months to get her husband’s service dog, Gunner — for whom the nonprofit agency is named — Kinard began her quest to help other veterans and children in need.
Service dogs require a variety of necessary items to perform their jobs, including vests, custom harnesses, veterinary visits and more. Any funds raised support the organization and the families Kinard helps. When SD Gunner Fund reaches its $5,000 goal, Kinard plans to hold the gift card drawing. Anyone who donates any amount will be entered.
There are multiple ways to help and ensure your name is in the running for the prize. On Saturday, SD Gunner Fund will host a booth at Holly Days on the Hill’s Annual Holiday Market at J.F. Gregory City Park, where they will take donations. On Dec. 15, Kinard has partnered with KTM’s Sew Much Baggage for an open shopping night at the store, 11254 Ford Ave., to benefit the SD Gunner Fund. A percentage of each sale will be donated to the organization. Kinard also will be on hand that evening to accept donations and enter contributors into the raffle. Donations also may be made online through SD Gunner Fund’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/SDGunner or their website www.webjobs.kender.org/sdgunnerfund.
“We have been very grateful for the support we have received since the SD Gunner fund began and have been fortunate enough to be able to help many families receive and support service animals,” Kinard said. “We need the community’s support as the organization continues to grow to help fund the growing number of service dogs being placed with families in need.”