Helping Hand Monkeys

Helping Hand Monkeys

Kirby Hill, Staff Writer

You have heard of service dogs, but have you heard of service monkeys? Helping Hands, a nonprofit organization, dedicates their time to train monkeys that assist people with handicapped motor skills.

The monkeys are incredibly intelligent and are able to help with the following: picking up dropped or out of reach items, helping with a drink of water, flipping pages, scratching itches, pushing buttons and switches, and even positioning limbs on a wheelchair to a more comfortable position. Not only do the moneys help with everyday tasks, but they also provide companionship and bring a sense of purpose to the recipients. Patients, who are not used to being in charge of their life, experience the responsibility and joy of taking care of something.

Helping Hands takes pride in their work by staying connected to the people that they have helped. When a monkey is first being placed with a new person, customized coaching and in-home training are given. The organization checks in on the behavior, nutrition, and medical needs of the monkeys and offers lifelong support and mentoring to all participants.

The monkeys provide help with everyday tasks, companionship, and not to mention they are super cute. Helping Hands is a truly unique program.