Toyota gives Carolina Canines for Service a lift

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- An area charity is getting a free ride to help move along its efforts.

Toyota Scion of Wilmington gave a new minivan to Carolina Canines for Service. The giveaway is part of the 100 Cars for Good program.

It will be used to drive wounded veterans and others with disabilities, as they get trained service dogs and learn to work with the pups.

The Toyota 100 Cars for Good program will award 100 vehicles over 100 days to non-profit organizations nationwide based on votes from the public. Carolina Canines is today's winner.

The group has provided more than $6 million in assistance, at no cost to its clients.

"When we have someone in a manual chair or a power wheelchair we now have the opportunity to get them anywhere we need to get them," Carolina Canines President/CEO Rick Hairston said. "When we are going around town doing training with them and their dog we no longer have to try and rent an expensive vehicle. We no longer have to try and rely on somebody else getting them to and from, we can now do it ourselves."

Toyota Scion of Wilmington says the Sierra with its special advancements is worth more than $60,000.

Carolina Canines will place its 50th service dog in December.

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At $120,000 per dog trained, that is four times the national average. Either you made a mistake, or this is one of the most inefficient training organizations in the country.

The $6.0 million in services provided in our communities includes the value of the service dogs provided, training provided to the prisoner handlers, certified therapy program and literacy program.