Each week during our Monday Motivation segment, we highlight someone making the First Coast a better place to live.

Today we’re switching it up, sharing the story of a furry friend who spends his days providing comfort to ill children.

‘Reed’ is a facility dog who interacts with kids that are seeking treatment at the Ronald McDonald House (RMH)

Program Services Director, Shelli Martin, says Reed has built a relationship with the kids for the last two years.

“A lot of our children come from far away places and are here for long term... and what Reed does is provide them with a sense of normalcy,” Martin said.

Offering a hug, a wag of the tail, or a cuddle, Reed shows unconditional love to those who are living at RMH.

“Reed builds a relationship with them and gives them a reason to look forward to coming to their medical treatments,” Martin said. 

While some kids come to the Ronald McDonald for something as simple as getting their tonsils removed, there are other children seeking treatment for chronic conditions. No matter how long each child is there, Reed becomes their furry friend to help the time pass by. 

“Reed can be in my office, he will hear a child coming down the hall speaking and he knows that child’s voice and he will want to go and greet that child and interact with that child because they’ve created a bond over time,” Martin said.

Tuesday on GMJ – we’ll introduce you to the organization behind dogs like Reed.