An Alton based charity that trains and provides assistance dogs credited with changing autistic people's lives needs to raise £100,000 by the end of the month. 

Dogs for Autism has trained and placed 22 assistance dogs with clients over the past four years but now needs to urgently raise funds to continue the work. 

Hilary Armour, CEO of the charity, says that funds have been badly impacted by the cost of living crisis and has explained in an appeal why the charity was founded. 

She said: “When a friend's chocolate labrador spent a holiday with us in 2015 a phenomenal change came over our autistic son.

“A sudden, surprising and transformative friendship arose between dog and boy. We were moved to tears by the miracle taking place for a child who had no other friends and no means to communicate with his peers. Hope blossomed for the doors this could open for an isolated, lonely, and confused little boy.

“I discovered a couple of charities who supplied some autism assistance dogs but were utterly overwhelmed with demand and their books were closed, so I took action.” 

Hilary adds that the charity's aim was that, by 2024, they would be providing 10 dogs a year. However, each dog costs £25,000 over its lifetime to train and place, meaning the charity needs £100,000 to commit to the dogs. 

She said: “We don't charge for our dogs. We have nothing to sell, but with your help we can fulfil hopes and dreams with our four-legged, furry miracles.

Please help me and my colleagues make a real and significant life-changing difference to other families by supporting this fund today.”

More information on the charity can be found on the Dogs for Autism website and anyone who wants to donate can via a gofundme appeal.