How we can help

„You’re only defeated when you lose courage. Who keeps on fighting is a winner.“

Kristina opens her cramped hands for the first time in years, Lena speaks her very first words and Tim laughs for the first time in two years. And their parents, standing close by, are enchanted.

dolphin aid’s main objective is to enable this beautiful encounter and the important dolphin assisted therapy to many children and adults as possible. Dolphin assisted therapy often is the beginning of rehabilitation – and is there a more beautiful gift than providing a child with the start to a better future?

dolphin aid – the way out of hopelessness

The path of dolphin aid is inseparably intertwined with the fate of Tim. The son of dolphin aid’s founder Kirsten Kuhnert almost drowned in an unsecured pool. Emergency doctors gave him back his physical life. However, this life was surrounded by a wall, for 16 months Tim was in a persistent vegetative state. Helpless doctors, a desperate family. Last hope: dolphin assisted therapy in Florida. Indeed, the dolphins were able to break down the wall. Tim’s awakening marks the birth hour of dolphin aid.

dolphin aid helps

Since its founding in 1995 by Kirsten Kuhnert, dolphin aid has supported and advised thousands of families. Thus, dolphin aid enabled provable and significant progress in the development of countless children who had been given up on by recognized medicine.
Together with committed and positive people, renowned sponsors and especially due to the amount of individual, small donations, dolphin aid has paved these families the way to dolphin assisted therapy.

Further goals of dolphin aid are to advance research, creating therapy and research institutions as well as the recognition of dolphin assisted therapy by the German public health service.  dolphin aid e.V. is nationally recognised as particularly eligible.


Back in 2003, independent, European, scientific studies were able to medically prove the effectiveness of dolphin assisted therapy. The scientific evaluations affirm what all of the participating children and adults could already experience themselves: Dolphin assisted therapy really helps!

Find out more about the effectiveness of dolphin assisted therapy in several publications, that we have put together for you on our research page.

Why dolphin assisted therapy?

The progress of health that dolphin assisted therapy can achieve for children and adults with handicaps is the beginning of their rehabilitation.

Dolphin assisted therapy doesn’t only give hope for a more independent life – it also lays the foundation for the later use of classic medical therapies that would otherwise have been medically impossible for affected children and adults.
This is why dolphin aid e.V. and dolphin assisted therapy exist!

We are laureate of the “Germany-Oscar” (“Deutschland-Oscar”) of the campaign “Germany – land of ideas” (“Deutschland – Land der Ideen”). The prizes were awarded in October 2008 under the patronage of Horst Köhler, Federal President of Germany at that time, for creative and innovative ideas in Germany.

Our expertise:

  • General help and support of the needs of handicapped people
  • Integrating handicapped people into society
  • Executing and supporting dolphin assisted therapy, with focus on children
  • Rehabilitation of sick and handicapped people
  • Helping victims of abuse (children and adults)
  • Emergency programmes
  • Financial support of lower income families
  • Care of families at therapy centres
  • Executing the travel arrangements for the patients
  • Booking flights, accommodation and rental car
  • Therapeutic supervision and support
  • Negotiations with therapy centres, hotels and airlines etc. about special conditions in favour of the affected patients
  • Generating donations and sponsor money
  • Creating sponsoring concepts
  • Acquisition of permanent donors
  • Establishing support networks
  • Partnership and cooperation with other organisations
  • Administration of donations
  • Media and public relations
  • dolphin aid’s own newsletter with information for the public
  • Promoting alternative cures for sick and handicapped children and adults
  • Supporting rehabilitation arrangements for preparation and follow-up of dolphin assisted therapy
  • Promoting research and science
  • Recognition of dolphin assisted therapy by the public health care system
  • Developing new aids and remedies (e.g. waterproof underwater EEG)
  • Executing scientific congresses
  • Advice in medical questions
  • Legal advice
  • Family counselling
  • Supporting scientific diploma theses about dolphin assisted therapy
  • Creating therapy and treatment concepts
  • Creating certification guidelines for dolphin assisted therapy
  • Certification of dolphin assisted therapy centres
  • Developing a training guideline for therapists of dolphin assisted therapy
  • Creating examination criteria for the certification of a dolphin assisted therapist
  • Supervision and controlling in compliance with the dolphin aid certification guidelines
  • The management is a member of “Bundesverband Deutscher Stiftungen”

Here you can download our short profile.

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