Michael and Gabriel Stranges need a new best friend - one with four legs that will make a huge difference to their lives.
The pair both have degrees of autism and a benefit night will be held later this month to fund an assistance dog for their family.
Michael, 8, has a moderate intellectual disability, autism and ADHD.
He has many challenging behaviours caused by an inability to comprehend the world and has constant anxiety.
Seven-year-old Gabriel has a desperate need for routine in order to cope, and anxiety that deprives him of a basic quality of life.
The inclusion of a trained autism assistance dog into the family would have a significant impact, the boys' parents Enzo and Adriana Stranges said.
"It may just enable them to interact with the world and get more out of it," Mrs Stranges said.
"It will open up a world that's previously been shut."
Righteous Pups Australia (RPA) is a not-for-profit organisation with a mission to raise and train autism assistance dogs that undertake a variety of practical tasks for both adults and children with a disability.
They provide a greater level of independence and self-esteem.
Mrs Stranges said it would reduce anxiety and repetitive behaviour and help the boys socialise.
She said everyone knew the benefits having a pet could provide: "[The dog's] love is unconditional."
Completing tasks, like shopping and attending functions, would be made easier, as would crossing the road - Michael has no sense of danger.
RPA has a number of reasons for introducing the dogs to children with autism, including enabling children and their families to develop and maintain the highest possible degree of independence and act as a buffer for common anxieties.
"A Night at the Opera" has been organised for the West Wollongong family by the Lions Club of Figtree in association with RPA.
The black-tie event will be held in the Sinclair Room of Dapto Leagues Club on Saturday, February 23, beginning at 7pm.
Tickets are $70 per person, which includes a three-course dinner and entertainment.
They are available from Figtree Lions Club members, Precision Cuts in Westfield Figtree or by phone on 4226 4337 or 4272 4482.