If you are interested in volunteering your time (along with your pet) for one of the Animal Assisted Activity/Therapy programs, our next available class begins in June! The class dates are June 25th, July 9th, 16th and 23rd. (Evaluations will be July 30th.) Please remember that prior to class, you will need to contact Carol Davenport at firstname.lastname@example.org as well as complete and submit an assessment tool. (Pre-registration and pre-payment is required.)
When: Sunday, June 5, 5:00-9:00pm
Where: Milano Inn
Join us at Milano Inn for an evening dedicated to Paws & Think and ARPO.
Enjoy a fun evening with other dog lovers in the outside patio and the lawn reserved for Paws & Think guests…and your dog! A portion of all the food purchases that night will be donated to Paws & Think. Additionally, we will have a Silent Auction with great items. 100% of money raised from the Silent Auction is donated to Paws & Think.
Milano Inn is located at 231 S College Ave. Indianapolis, IN 46202 (Map & Directions)
RESERVATIONS ARE REQUIRED!
Please call the Milano Inn at 317-264-3585 and indicate you would like to make a reservation for Paws & Think and include the number of people and dogs coming.
Check out a video to see the fun: http://milanoinn.com/events/
Bringing dogs is based on weather since the event is outside. If raining, event will continue inside but unfortunately dogs will not be able to join us.
If you are interested in volunteering your time (along with your pet) for one of the Animal Assisted Activity/Therapy programs, our next available class begins in May! The class dates are May 14th, May 21st, June 4th and June 11th. (Evaluations will be June 18th.) Please remember that prior to class, you will need to contact Carol Davenport at email@example.com as well as complete and submit an assessment tool. (Pre-registration and pre-payment is required.)
Eight years ago, Gina Marchino adopted an eight-week old mutt puppy from a shelter. The young pup, who soon became known as Greta, was listed by the shelter as a Boxer/Boston Terrier mix, but Gina’s friends were constantly asking her if Greta was a pit bull. Not knowing much about the breed, Gina decided to read up on pit bulls to find out if that was in fact what Greta was. She quickly learned of the tormented history of pit bulls and the many ways in which they are horribly treated as a result of their bad reputation as a breed.
Because of Greta, Gina felt inspired to educate the public on the truth about pit bulls. She wanted people to know that the bad reputation the breed has gained is unjust and simply inaccurate, and she has worked to help clear their name in several venues, including serving on the Board of a pit rescue organization and even opening up her home to foster pit bulls looking for their forever families.
Gina’s special bond with Greta also led her to get involved with Paws & Think, where she was excited at the opportunity for both of them to be able to volunteer. “Greta has a lot of love to share and she’s changed who I am. It didn’t seem fair to keep that all to myself.” Greta, who is a very social animal and loves the attention she receives as part of a Paws & Think therapy team, enjoys volunteering as much as Gina, who says it is rewarding to do something good for humanity with her best friend.
Together, Gina and Greta visit an adult day care for the developmentally disabled where they are able to bring joy to many just by simply stopping in to say hello. Gina recalls the impact she saw on their first visit, when many of the residents seemed to light up like the sun when she and Greta walked in: “It’s amazing that just having a dog around changes people’s moods immediately and makes them forget their troubles for a while.”
Everybody has that one special piece of clothing that makes them feel like a million bucks. For Feathers, that would be her Paws & Think bandana. “As soon as I put in on, she sits up straighter and looks like she is ready for work,” says Jean Palmer Heck, Feathers’s owner.
Feathers and Jean are a therapy team for Paws & Think. Together, they visit schools, libraries, and summer camps across the Indianapolis area to work with children and help them improve their reading skills. Throughout their 2 years volunteering with Paws & Think, Jean has witnessed how the kids have progressed and become more confident by reading to Feathers. But she has also seen a difference in Feathers.
“She is usually very shy,” notes Jean. “She was rescued from a house with 10 dogs, and I suspect she was abused by an adult,” she explains. But when Feathers enters a room full of children, everything changes. “She warms up to little kids,” Jean says, recalling how much Feathers has “blossomed” during her time as a Paws & Think dog.
Jean has used Feathers’s story to help inspire kids who are shy as well. “When we did a Families First evening with pre-schoolers in Lebanon, we met a little girl that was very uncomfortable in the library. From my interaction with her, I don’t think she even knew how to choose a book from the shelves,” recalling how she had to guide the girl every step of the way.
“I kept saying that my doggie felt shy about reading books, at first too, but she really got to like it.” After that, Jean recalls, “I could see the little girl’s confidence grow. It still brings tears to my eyes to think that a child had no exposure to a library. And it puts a smile on my face thinking my dog was a part of it”.
But while Feathers has come out of her shell through her work, it hasn’t been all work and no play. Besides the joy of working with children, what else does Feathers enjoy about being a Paws & Think dog? “Her treats, especially the drive through at McDonald’s after our sessions!”
As an animal care technician at Indianapolis Animal Care and Control, Nancy Mynatt has made a big difference in the lives of countless canines. But two years ago, when she learned about the Youth-Canine program from fellow employee Jodi VanSlyke, she saw an opportunity to not only improve the lives of dogs, but the lives of youth as well.
Since then, Nancy has served as a dog handler in the program, helping academically and behaviorally challenged students learn how to train shelter dogs in need. With Nancy’s guidance, the youth teach the dogs basic obedience skills, including sit, stay, look, and leave it.
Both trainee and trainer are on a journey of learning and growth during the course of the Youth-Canine program. Nancy has witnessed firsthand how the improved focus, confidence, and self-esteem of the dogs is contagious to the students. “My favorite part of volunteering in the program is when the kids get excited about the progress the dogs are making. It’s something positive that makes them smile”.
While the students graduate the program empowered with the principles needed to make good life decisions moving forward, they’ve also given the dogs a priceless gift – adoptability. What is the news that Nancy is always hoping to hear? “When we get news that the dog has been adopted!”
WHEN: 10:30 AM to 5:30 PM
(We will break briefly for lunch.)
WHERE: Carmel Office Suites
600 E. Carmel Drive, Carmel, IN 46032
(Google Map: http://g.co/maps/f8wk8 )
Cost (including all training materials) is $75
If you already have a R.E.A.D. manual the workshop is $40
To register make checks payable to Paws and Think and send to:
3668 Tahoe Ct
Carmel, IN 46033
If you have any questions, contact Kathy Janes, firstname.lastname@example.org
In this workshop you will learn how to:
• Effectively conduct a reading session
• Successfully mentor young readers
• Set up a program in schools, libraries and other settings
• Help convince decision-makers in your community that R.E.A.D. works
• Help make reading FUN with different tools and techniques, and
• Benefit by becoming a registered R.E.A.D. member
This is a fast-paced, information-packed class for humans only. The emphasis is on what you need to know to organize and conduct a successful reading program. It is not a training class to teach your dog specific skills.
Paws & Think is looking for a graphic designer to volunteer their skills to our organization! We have an ongoing need for someone to help primarily with our print marketing materials, but there are also opportunities to help with web/social graphics, event invitations and program logos.
We are looking for one or more volunteers with design experience (or degree) who are proficient in Illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign.
If you are interested in volunteering in this capacity please contact Rhaya Shilts at email@example.com with your interest, availability, and any samples of your work.
UPDATE: April class is now full!
Our next class begins in May. (Click here for dates.)
If you are interested in volunteering your time (along with your pet) for one of the Animal Assisted Activity/Therapy programs, our next available class begins in April! The class dates are April 2nd, 9th, 16th and 23rd. (Evaluations will be April 30th.) Please remember that prior to class, you will need to contact Carol Davenport at firstname.lastname@example.org as well as complete and submit an assessment tool. (Pre-registration and pre-payment is required.)
Paws & Think’s Board of Directors is pleased to announce the appointment of Kelsey Burton as Executive Director effective January 4, 2016. Burton comes to Paws & Think with a wealth of knowledge and an extensive background in both the non-profit and for-profit sectors. She brings more than a decade of non-profit experience to the organization including working with such organizations as the American Red Cross and the Family Support Center. Burton is a Lafayette, Indiana native and a 2006 graduate of Butler University, where she earned her Bachelor of Science in Biology and Chemistry.
“I am elated about the opportunity to work with this wonderful volunteer-led organization,” states Burton. “2016 promises to be a year filled with strengthening our current partnerships while working to build new ones. I am eager to be part of this amazing group and to work with our incredible volunteers and partners who help us achieve our mission every day.” Burton says, “Paws & Think plays a key role in improving the quality of life right here in Central Indiana through its youth canine, reading and animal-assisted activity/therapy programs.”
“We are thrilled to have Kelsey join our team. We look forward to how she will use her previous knowledge, experience and expertise in order to help us continue to improve and expand our programs for the benefit of our community.” says Brett Nelson, Board of Directors President.