Originating from a family of industrialists in the Ardennes, Pierre Sommer (1909-2002) and his wife, Adrienne (1902-2003) always shared two complementary passions: human life and animals. Thus, in order to foster the bond between man and animal and to ease the suffering of people faced with disease, they created, in 1971, a Foundation bearing their name.
With regards to human-animal relationships, the Foundation strives, primarily, to focus on the educational aspect of this challenge. This is the most effective method to bring awareness to its work.
The Foundation consequently began a thorough study of the possible interplays between humans and animals whose name - Animal mediation (known as Animal-Assisted Activities)- remains a term not widely in use yet.
But the adventure is so full of promise that it merits further examination.
Through this process, a companion animal enhances the relationship between a therapist and a sick person in order to improve the condition of the latter – even to the point of facilitating healing. Apart from the therapeutic field, this approach can also be applied in social and educational contexts.
Backed by the authenticity of its expertise, the Fondation A and P Sommer actively contributes to the development of animal mediation and supports projects putting this mediation into action.
The Foundation has a multidisciplinary resource center that encourages research across a broad spectrum: in addition to its support for academic work, the Foundation awards each year three prizes for the theses of social workers.
In its mission, the Foundation also produces and distributes educational packs, has a partnership with the Cité des Sciences in Paris and regularly holds symposiums.
From 2003 to 2012, the Foundation contributed to the development of 300 projects for a total of 2,3 million Euros.
The Foundation is financially independent.
At the Salon International de l'Agriculture (Paris), the Foundation and the Bergerie Nationale will announce a prize of € 10,000 for non-profit farms opening to the public with disabilities.
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