The specialized training session consists of a support group where the veterans have the opportunity to share in a group setting with a social worker and then they train their dog to become their own service dog.
To train, assist, guide and serve veterans who have been diagnosed by the Veteran's Administration (VA) with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and/or Military Sexual Trauma (MST) through the operation of a Service Dog Program. In support of this mission, to search out and qualify veterans in need of psychological healing through a service dog program; to evaluate the dog that the veteran brings to the program for suitability to be a service dog; to provide qualified volunteer trainers and a training regimen in obedience, public access and tasks/work that the dog will perform in order to meet the individual needs of the veteran; to provide a facility suitable for this training; and to have available on staff volunteer professional social workers to help the veteran deal with psychological issues which may arise as they work through the program.
To become a model Service Dog Program which exclusively meets the psychological needs of veterans; to be identified for replication nationwide in meeting the overwhelming psychological needs of veterans currently returning from military conflict; to document and showcase the efficacy of such a Service Dog Program in healing these psychological wounds; and to serve as a convincing force to persuade Agencies such as the Branches of Military Service, the Veterans Administration and the professional psychiatric/psychological communities that such a Service Dog Program can be effective in healing the invisible wounds of military conflict.
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