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Raising service dogs for veterans, one pair of flip flops at a time

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WATCH |  Flip flops might not be the first thing that comes to your mind when you think of war veterans, but for these two brothers, it's the most substantial way they've found for their business to help veterans with PTSD. 

When Tommy and Tim Gibb founded Tidal New York, they made it one of their missions to help and hire U.S. military veterans in their community. 

Within the last year of starting the flip flop company, they have filled more than half of their staff with veterans and are now launching a special campaign to help Heroes in Transition, a nonprofit that provides service to veterans in need, including service dogs.

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All proceeds from the limited sale of "Soles for Service" sandals will go to raising and training service dogs for veterans with PTSD. The goal is to raise enough money for two dogs, which costs around $15,000-20,000 per dog.


Michael Warshaw co-founded Heroes in Transition in memory of his childhood best friend, Captain Eric A. Jones, who died in service during his tour in Afghanistan in 2009. Captain Jones was a U.S. Marine helicopter pilot who especially loved dogs and helping others. 

So far, Heroes in Transition has provided 44 service dogs for veterans with PTSD to help them go out to public and crowded places and provide emotional support.

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According to the U.S. Veterans Affairs, approximately 11-20 percent of military veterans suffer from PTSD in a given year.

In addition to service dogs, Heroes in Transition also provides financial support for service families, home modifications for disabled veterans and transitional support group therapy. 

"We're obviously a charity, so we run on donations - that's the fuel that keeps us going," Warshaw said. "That's why our partnership with Tidal is so important." 

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