FAQ – Frequently asked questions

What do I have to do in order to register a child or an adult as a patient for dolphin assisted therapy?
Which diagnoses is dolphin assisted therapy especially suitable for?
What are the achievements of a dolphin assisted therapy for different diagnoses?
How can I raise money for a patient in order to afford dolphin assisted therapy?
Does the donor receive a donation receipt for their donation for their child/patient?
How can the donor deduct their donation from the tax?
Where can I participate in dolphin assisted therapy and who can provide advice on which therapy centre I should choose?
Are there dolphin assisted therapies in Europe as well or do I have to go to Florida or Curaçao?
How much does it cost to enable dolphin assisted therapy to my child?
Is dolphin assisted therapy also available for adults?
How long do I have to wait until a spot for dolphin assisted therapy becomes available?
In which language will the therapy be offered? Are there translators?
Are the dolphins trained for this specific kind of therapy?
What kind of therapists are present?
Do I get support while planning the trip?
Can I claim the costs for dolphin assisted therapy as an extraordinary expense?
Do I have to be a member of dolphin aid in order to get help?
Is it possible to swim with dolphins without therapeutic approach?
Do the therapy centres offer internships?
I would like to volunteer. How can I help dolphin aid?
What do I have to do in order to register a child or an adult as a patient for dolphin assisted therapy?

We have compiled detailed information for you that will surely answer many questions regarding the initial registration. It also contains the questionnaire for the preparation of a dolphin assisted therapy with which you can register the patient with us. Of course, the staff of dolphin aid e.V. is always at your disposal for any questions.

Which diagnoses is dolphin assisted therapy especially suitable for?

There are no excluding diagnoses. We have compiled a list of diagnoses for you that have been treated with dolphin assisted therapy.

What are the achievements of a dolphin assisted therapy for different diagnoses?

The achievements of dolphin assisted therapy are as various as the clinical pictures treated. It is a fact that dolphin assisted therapy isn’t a miracle cure … but it often enables the handicapped patients’ rehabilitation with academical medical treatment methods or accelerates it.

How can I raise money for a patient in order to afford dolphin assisted therapy?

As a special help, dolphin aid e.V. offers to realise donations for single persons. In order to use this service, you have to register your child or an adult with dolphin aid e.V. first.

You will receive the relevant bank details after the successful registration.

Does the donor receive a donation receipt for their donation for their child/patient?

At dolphin aid, all donations are tax deductible.
According to § 5 (1) No. 9 of the Corporation Tax Law, we are exempt from corporation tax because we exclusively and directly serve tax-privileged and charitable purposes in terms of §§ 55 ff. general tax code. In accordance with Section 52 (2) sentence 1 (3) of the General Fiscal Law, we promote the following non-profit purposes: promotion of the public health system and public health care. We are entitled to issue donation receipts for donations that we receive for the use of these purposes.

How can the donor deduct their donation from the tax?

Being a charitable organisation, dolphin aid e.V. is nationally recognised by the tax and revenue office as particularly eligible. This is why membership fees and donations for dolphin aid e.V. are tax deductible. You can claim taxes on donations up to 200.00 Euro with your deposit slip or the bank statement. If the donation exceeds 200.00 Euro, the presentation of an official tax receipt will be necessary.

If you would like to request a tax receipt, please send an e-mail to Rossow@dolphin-aid.net and let us know the amount and date of your donation. Please don’t forget to specify your address. 🙂

Where can I participate in dolphin assisted therapy and who can provide advice on which therapy centre I should choose?

There are no economic connections to the therapy centres. dolphin aid doesn’t run its own therapy centre but is a pure aid organisation and therefore completely independent.

However, the medical-scientific advisory board of dolphin aid has certified two centres worldwide:

Curacao Dolphin Therapy & Research Center (CDTC)

Homepage: https://www.cdtc.info/en/

The therapy centre on Curaçao has been collaborating closely with dolphin aid since 2004. The objective of this cooperation is to create treatment units on the highest level. The dolphin aid therapy, which dolphin aid created for the Curaçao Dolphin Therapy Center, is based on the current state of medical research and highlights the free interaction between dolphin and patient. This is supposed to accelerate the patient’s positive development, an increase in their quality of life and a positive rehabilitation. dolphin aid has put all their know-how into this kind of therapy. The whole setup of the therapy is subject to dolphin aid’s strict certification rules, and the medical-scientific advisory board as well as founder Kirsten Kuhnert keep a strict eye on those rules being followed. These include not only the selection of highly qualified therapists and physicians but also to make sure that the environment is treated respectfully – in consideration of the current nature and animal welfare regulations. For dolphin aid, the adequate animal welfare of the dolphins is a basic requirement for the success of dolphin assisted therapy. In the Curaçao Dolphin Therapy Center, the dolphins are kept in a natural bay with excellent water quality. Both humans and animals will find natural conditions to interact with each other. With its holistic concept, the Curaçao Dolphin Therapy Center offers the ideal premises for an efficient therapy.
Possible period for a therapy: all year
Duration of therapy: at least 2 weeks (3 or 4 weeks are possible)

Florida – Island Dolphin Care (IDC)

Homepage: www.islanddolphincare.org

The Island Dolphin Care therapy centre is run by Deena and Peter Hoagland. After successfully participating in the “classroom” and on the platform, the children are rewarded by swimming with the dolphins. The biggest achievements can be made with autistic, maladjusted and abused children. To ensure the requirements of a successful therapy, the participating children must be older than three years, have their own head posture and be free of seizures.
Possible period for a therapy: approximately March until late November
Duration of therapy: at least 2 weeks (3 or 4 weeks are possible)

We are happy to help you choosing the right centre for you. The members of the parents‘ association can also help you make a decision. They are affected parents themselves who have already participated in dolphin assisted therapy with their children and therefore can give you “first hand information”.

Are there dolphin assisted therapies in Europe as well or do I have to go to Florida or Curaçao?

Unfortunately, dolphin assisted therapy according to dolphin aid’s quality standards (certification guidelines) isn’t available in Europe at the moment. Those arrangements include organisational and medical aspects of a centre (staff, management, emergency chain, etc.) as well as explicit expectations regarding the adequate animal welfare of the dolphins.

How much does it cost to enable dolphin assisted therapy to my child?

There are different costs depending on the therapy centre you choose. The information for those affected contain a cost overview based on a family of four (costs of therapy, flight and accommodation).

Is dolphin assisted therapy also available for adults?

Adults can participate in dolphin assisted therapy as well. We are happy to have a chat with you and talk about your options.

How long do I have to wait until a spot for dolphin assisted therapy becomes available?

Depending on the therapy centre, there can be longer waiting times, especially during holiday season. But in general, the waiting time goes along with the funding. If the financing is all set, there are usually free therapy spots available during the current year outside the high season.

In which language will the therapy be offered? Are there translators?

The centres will of course appoint therapists who, if possible, speak the native language of the respective family (normally English, German, Dutch and Spanish).

Are the dolphins trained for this specific kind of therapy?

Yes, they are. Experienced dolphin trainers and therapists have trained the dolphins and prepared them for their upcoming tasks.

What kind of therapists are present?

There are always, in changing occupation, physiotherapists, speech therapists, neurologists, psychologists and special educators around.

Those experts possess additional qualifications like Castillo-Morales therapy, Bobath concept, neurodynamic, manual lymphatic drainage or Brucker Biofeedback. At the same time, all therapy centres cooperating with dolphin aid e.V. have a medical-scientific management.

Do I get support while planning the trip?

We are happy to help you organising your trip to one of the therapy centres. If you want to, our travel coordinator Lückertz Reisen, Münster takes care of e.g.:

  • booking of accommodation and flights etc.
  • declaring special or oversize luggage like wheelchairs or
  • provides you with information about entry requirements and visas
Can I claim the costs for dolphin assisted therapy as an extraordinary expense?

Prof. Dr. Hans-Josef Vogel, member of our legal advisory board, has provided detailed information about this topic. You can read them here. (Link siehe B04)

Do I have to be a member of dolphin aid in order to get help?

No, that’s not necessary. Unlike other organisations, you don’t have to be a member of dolphin aid in order to get help. But we do appreciate every sustaining membership (aid contribution with a minimum of 100,00 Euro).

Is it possible to swim with dolphins without therapeutic approach?

dolphin aid doesn’t provide swimming with dolphins as a leisure activity. We are a pure aid organisation.

Do the therapy centres offer internships?

Do the therapy centres offer internships?

The therapy centres cooperating with us are constantly looking for trainees/interns. The interns should already have completed their education (e.g. speech therapy, physiotherapy) or be about to graduate from university in a similar subject.

The internship usually lasts at least three months. A very good command of English (for Curaçao Dutch as well) is required. The respective centres answer your questions regarding accommodation, meals and wages.

The therapy centres decide autonomously about the assignment of their interns. For this reason, please send your applications to the respective centre you would like to work for.

If you are interested in the contact details of the therapy centres cooperating with dolphin aid, click here

I would like to volunteer. How can I help dolphin aid?

dolphin aid is grateful for every kind of support.
We would like to tell you more about the versatile opportunities of helping us, e.g. during fairs, at events, street parties or in supporting us to manage our daily, administrative business. Just give us a call or send a message – we are looking forward to hearing from you!

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