O melhor amigo de Odete
Diario Catarinense (South America) – 09/20/2006
Donna Ferry, raiser of JK (2J300 Pier x Kiva) in the Genesee NY region, sent in this translated article and the following information. Odete Moreira of Florianopolis in South America, graduated with guide J.K. in January 2003. She returned for a visit during the 2005 GEB Walkathon. She presented CEO Bill Badger with ceramic pieces she brought with her from Brazil which are now displayed in the lounge area at the Training School.
Creative artist, Odete Moreira has never made a ceramic piece the same as another: decorations or household items, mixtures of techniques, colors and textures. She feels the result of her works with her fingers. Blind for nine years because of diabetes, Odete discovered ceramics when she found a therapy and occupation after losing her vision. She was a hairdresser and worked in a salon together with her husband, Zomer Moreira.
“I will not say that it was easy, but I think that we get used to everything if we have the willpower and objectives in life,” she said today at 44 years of age.
The artist heard about guide dogs, and with the help of Zomer and her only son, she began to procure one to be her companion. Through friends, she made contact with an American institution, Guiding Eyes for the Blind, a school for guide dogs that helps them become apt to conduct the visual impaired in the streets.
This philanthropic school works with volunteers and is funded by donations.
After various contacts, Odete traveled to New York where she met the school and the dog that would become her second son – J.K., a Labrador. She stayed a month in the US, coexisting with the animal and learning the techniques to command him. The dog, as well as her stay in the school, was donated to this artist.
Odete stands out because, with J.K., won her eyes back. “Now he and I are one.”
The dog with brilliant, black fur, does not take his eyes off his owner. At whatever command, always in English, is ready to act. “Today, I have more confidence in J.K. in the hour to cross a street than with my husband, whereas he sometimes gets distracted, the dog does not,” she tells, smiling.
The American institution accompanies, through reports, the performance of J.K. and still helps the family with medication and supplements for the animal.
In November, Odete will participate in the Warehouse of the Arts, in Florianópolis, and her stand will have two attractions: the beautiful pieces of ceramics and the dog, with sweet eyes and who only answers to English.