News Stories for 2024


2024 Statement on the Right to Live in the Community: Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

June 11-13, 2024 marked the seventeenth session of the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, held at the United Nations. This year’s theme revolved around rethinking disability inclusion, with a special focus on technology, humanitarian emergencies, and the right to decent work and a sustainable livelihood.
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SSD dog and Merry Heilner puppy sitter

Dogs Learn a New Routine with Puppy Sitters

When SSD Culligan goes to a sitter, she gains all sorts of new experiences. Maybe she meets the sitter’s cats, chickens, or chinchilla. Maybe she spends the week with small children. Maybe she practices sleeping in instead of waking up early to go to the office. Maybe she spends a week or so in an...
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VIP Armstrong, VIP Luther, and raisers

Puppy Raisers: Who Are They and What Do They Do?

How does a cute, nine-week-old puppy go from just learning their name to being ready to learn specialized tasks for their future partner? Puppy raisers are the key.
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Volunteer Ambassador Dog Teams Help Create Welcoming Communities

Did you know that Susquehanna Service Dogs’ Ambassador Dog teams participated in 556 community outreach activities in 2023? This includes 189 meet and greets and 112 formal demonstrations about Susquehanna Service Dogs and how assistance dogs can assist people with disability to live more independently and have the confidence to chase their dreams.
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Groundbreaking 1

Capital Area Head Start Breaks Ground on Nature-Based PNC Grow Up Great® Play Area

(Harrisburg, PA) April 11, 2024 – Preschool students at Capital Area Head Start’s Granite Street Center in Harrisburg will soon have a new outdoor area for nature-based play and learning, thanks to a $75,000 grant from PNC Foundation through its signature early childhood education initiative, PNC Grow Up Great®.
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Vinakshi Singh

Direct Support Professionals Facilitate Authentic Inclusion for People with Disability

Direct Support Professionals play a vital role in creating authentic inclusion alongside people with disability. Keystone Institute India has developed a National Training for Direct Support Practitioners, a curriculum designed to develop a dignified, respected workforce of direct support professionals (DSPs).
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240329 Letter to SSD from PA Governor

PA Governor Recognizes Susquehanna Service Dogs

Susquehanna Service Dogs (SSD) is honored to receive a letter of recognition from Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro for our work supporting people with disability to live full lives within the community.
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Ludmila Malcoci at CSW68

Gender Responsive Budgeting: Delivering on Gender Equality Commitments in Multilaterals’ External Financing

On March 22, 2024, Keystone Human Services International (KHSI) partnered with Gender Budget Watchdog Network (GBWN) to co-host a parallel event at the United Nation’s 68th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW68), aligning with the CSW68 theme of “Accelerating the achievement of gender equality and empowerment of all women and girls...
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Facility Dog Builds Connections in York County School

“Part of the family” – that’s the slogan of Dallastown Area Intermediate School. It’s also the perfect description for SSD Doodle, the school’s facility dog. She’s a one-dog welcome committee for students arriving in the morning. She sits at the door greeting the fourth, fifth, and sixth graders as they come inside. “She gives kids...
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Adapted transportation

Two Years Later, Keystone Moldova Continues Support for Refugees from Ukraine

“I want my children to be safe, to have a happy childhood,” said Alina Lotocovska, a mother from Ukraine. In October 2023, she and her three children arrived in Moldova, where they received support through Keystone Moldova to help her children to grow and develop.
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