A Goldendoodle is the newest staff member at Champaign County Child Advocacy Center

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) – There’s a new member at the Champaign County Child Advocacy Center, who’s bringing his canine smile into his new role.

Cooper, an 8-month-old Goldendoodle, will be a full-time comfort dog for the center. He also serves as the new mascot for the CU Sunrise Rotary Club, who has chosen to sponsor Cooper.

The club is committed to providing $1,500 for food, vaccinations and training.

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The Advocacy Center supports kids who have gone through sexual and physical abuse. Staff said that having a therapy dog is a great way to give children a safe way to feel comfort during what could be a traumatic time in their life.

“Kids come here and they tell some pretty traumatic, horrific things, and for a lot of the kids, they’ve lost control; someone has taken that control by abusing them,” said Champaign County Child Advocacy Centers Forensic Interviewer Mary Tewell. “And I think [it’s good] having Cooper here — who doesn’t judge, doesn’t know their story, doesn’t know the horrific things they’ve been through — and he just comes in and loves them unconditionally.”

Cooper is also a hypoallergenic dog that doesn’t shed. That means he’s available for every child who may need him.

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