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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Program helps young adults with transition via work experience

Katie McLaughlin, 20, and Jerad Laitinen, 19, spent part of an afternoon last week making treats for the dogs at Spokane County Regional Animal Protection Services. They spread dog food on hamburger buns and passed them out to the dogs, each taking turns passing the bun under the cage door and talking to each pet. They are at the shelter gaining work and volunteer experience through East Valley’s Success Toward Adult Responsibility program, which works to help students between 18 and 21 years old transition to adulthood. Each has some sort of disability, whether they are intellectually disabled or are autistic. They are all high-functioning students and are learning to become advocates for themselves.