Special Announcement and Update!

Posted on: in [ General, News ]

With the 2018 calendar year coming to an end, the future of Retrieving Freedom, Inc. (RFI) is carrying on the vibrant colors of fall! With RFI incorporating in Mississippi during the fall of 2011, the organization has just started with our eighth year of service providing service dogs to disabled veterans and children with autism. Retrieving Freedom, Inc. has committed to excellence in our training and placement process since inception, and this has led to the continued evolution of the organization.

We are proud to announce that this commitment was confirmed today with the approval of our accreditation from the Accreditation Review Committee (ARC) of Assistance Dogs International (ADI). This certificate of accreditation follows a comprehensive five-day assessment onsite at a RFI facility, interviews with volunteers, staff, donors, and board members, and an evaluation of our dog care and training practices. Being an accredited organization solidifies RFI as one of the premiere service dog training organizations in the world! This significant accomplishment is recognized by the Veterans Affairs and adds reimbursable expenses for our veteran recipients for the future care of their new service dogs in food and veterinary costs.

Throughout this assessment, discussions included our current state of affairs and strategic plan for the future of the organization. This conversation included the founding of RFI in 2011, current locations in Waverly, Iowa and Senatobia, Mississippi, and plans for a third location in Sedalia, Missouri.

The Iowa location is currently operating at full capacity with staff and volunteers. With the recent vacancy in the organization's Director of Operations position in Mississippi, several temporary adjustments were made to support the needs of the organization. Taking the welfare and advancement of the dogs into consideration, RFI transferred these dogs to the Iowa location to work in the established programs supervised by staff trainers. For recipient training and placement, the Director of Dog Training and Placement travels with advanced dogs to the Mid-South area to continue our efforts to serve the population that RFI was founded on.

Finally, the Mississippi Director of Operations position was posted on, and interviews for this position have begun. Our goal with this new hire is to establish a sustainable future for the Mississippi location that fits with the needs of the recipients and volunteers. This could include relocating within the area to allow a more visible presence and increased accessibility.

In Missouri, Retrieving Freedom accepted a donation of 22 acres in Sedalia that will be the future Headquarters of the organization. An initial gift of $500,000 was also given to begin construction on the facility. Plans are to break ground on this facility this fall of 2018.

Continuing to encompass a community with a robust volunteer force, puppy fosters, college programs, elementary classrooms, corporate and individual sponsorships, and grants is the vision of RFI's evolution in increasing our production. The Retrieving Freedom slogan states that "Where some see limitations, We bring Opportunities," speaks not only toward our services but also toward our vision. Led by a great staff and supported by local communities, we will continue to strive to bring the greatest service dogs possible to disabled veterans and children with autism.

Retrieving Freedom's success is built upon the foundation of volunteers, staff and donor's continual commitment to our mission. This is what makes us family. If you are just finding Retrieving Freedom, we welcome you to join our family. If you are already part of the Retrieving Freedom Family, THANK YOU!


  • Carolyn Nash | Nov 16th 2018 @ 6:05 PM

    Loved reading this, and hope that after Spirit's retirement from Breeding, I can continue on in that need to have a third facility..........very cool, growth is always a good thing.

  • Lynne Luloff | Nov 17th 2018 @ 12:44 AM

    Such an amazing organization and an amazing volunteer opportunity. I strongly urge that anyone with a love for dogs and a desire to help others get involved in some capacity with this life changing orginazation. You will surely get back every bit as much as you put into it.

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