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Dogs in animal-assisted therapy and education




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The aim of the conference

The aim of the conference is to promote a good quality standard in AAI. Mostly - informing about the standards of dog-assisted therapy and education. A very important issue raised at the conference will be the welfare of working dogs – based on their behaviour and needs.

Our core value

We know that an animal-assisted intervention can be a very effective form of therapy and education. It may support people with disabilities, children with learning difficulties, people with social deficits, elderly patients and many more. We know, that the animal is our partner, and that a good intervention is based on respect, cooperation and trust. We want to share the knowledge about good quality standards in animal-assisted therapy and education with all countries, and work together to make AAI even more beneficial – not only for humans but for animals as well.

Date: 16th-17th November 2019

Location: Warsaw, Poland

Fee: Free for participants (places are limited, registration needed)

Speakers will be not only experts from partner organizations but also representatives of other European institutions using AAI, scientists working with dogs and researchers studying dog behaviour.  We are still working on the program. Not only the lectures will be provided.  Workshops and panel discussions are planned  as well.

Meet our speekers:

Marie-Jose Enders-Slegers, PhD has been Professor in Anthrozoology at the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences at the Open University in Heerlen, the Netherlands, since June 2013. She successively obtained her Doctoral Diploma Psychology (1990) at the University of Utrecht; a Doctorate (PhD) in Psychology (2000); a Diploma Health Care Psychologist (2001), Certificates Basic- and Senior Lecturer (2003) at the Utrecht University and until now numerous post doctorate courses for further qualifications in research and clinical psychology. She specialized in human-animal interactions. Her research is focused on the development of human animal relations and the meaning of human-animal interactions for vulnerable people (e.g. elderly, demented elderly, traumatized children, mentally handicapped people, children with psychiatric disorders, autistic children, and psychiatric patients) and on the link between domestic violence and animal abuse. Furthermore, she was founder and is nowadays adviser of AAIZOO (Animal Assisted Interventions in Zorg (Care), Onderzoek (Research), Onderwijs (Education); is Founder and Board member of The Circle of Violence in the Netherlands, is Fellow at the Denver University; has been member of the Expert Advisory Group Sociology of the CALLISTO project of the European Union (until 2016), is founder and board member of IVA, (Institute for Anthrozoology in the Netherlands) and is boardmember ( ex officio) of ISAZ (International Society of Anthrozoology), is on the advisory council of Green Chimneys, Brewster, N.Y. and at HABRI Central Management Advisory Board, U.S.A

Professor Daniel Mills is a RCVS, European and ASAB recognised specialist in clinical animal behaviour, who has been developing and exploring new interventions for behaviour problems at Lincoln for nearly 25 years. He was recently made a Fellow of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons in recognition of his contribution to the profession over this time.  His research focuses on  the assessment and management of the  emotional state of animals in real-world settings. More recently he has had opportunities to scientifically explore his interests in the potential value of our relationships with animals. His research in this area focuses on the benefits of companion animals using a multidisciplinary approach, for example through collaborations with biologists, health care professionals, psychologists, lawyers and economists. Daniel still consults at the specialist behaviour referral clinic and teaches on both undergraduate programmes and the MSc in clinical animal behaviour offered at the University of Lincoln.

PhD Christine Olsen is founder of the Norwegian Centre of Anthrozoology and chair leader of the board. Dr. Olsen is group head of “Small animals in visiting programs” in the IAHAIO Taskforce. She has a master degree in ethology, and a PhD in public health focusing on animal-assisted interventions. Dr. Olsen is also a dog behaviorist and dog trainer, and screen dogs personality. She is currently doing research on dog behavior.

Line Sandstedt is managing director of the Norwegian Centre of Anthrozoology. She is a lector in science and a postgraduate in special needs education and coaching. Sandstedt is also a dog behaviourist and dog trainer, and screen dogs personality for AAI. Sandstedt gives courses in dog training both nationally and internationally. She is responsible for all of the education given by AZS, both dog training and training of human-animal teams. Line has worked for the organization since 2006.

Magdalena Nawarecka-Piątek - President of Animals for People Association. Graduate of Warsaw University, specialization in social policy and pedagogy care and upbringing with educational therapy. Educationist, sensory integration therapist, Animal Assisted Therapy instructor since 2005. Since 2017 licensed evaluator of Human-Dog teams in Pet Partners Organization (USA).  Experienced therapist and educator in AAI with children. Since 2016 co-author of the dog-assisted therapy program for Alzheimer patients. Trainer in AAI courses for proffesionals. Co-author of international AAI handbooks.

PhD  Lisa Maria Glenk received her diploma (MSc equivalent) in behavioral endocrinology from the University of Vienna. She completed her doctoral studies at the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna, in 2012 on animal-assisted interventions. After completion of her degree, she was appointed as a science communicator while pursuing her own research interests as a guest scientist in Vienna and Prague. Lisa Maria Glenk joined the Messerli Research Institute (Comparative Medicine) in 2013 as a postdoctoral junior researcher at the interface of animal welfare, stress physiology and immune modulation. In addition, she is strongly involved in science communication for non-academics (e.g. hands-on science, school lectures). Her work has been honored with several grants and awards. Dr. Lisa Maria Glenk is a board member of the Austrian Society for Biofeedback and Psychophysiology, scientific advisory board member of the Qualitätsnetzwerk Schulbegleithunde (Germany) and founding member of the Hundesicherheitstraining für Kinder und Jugendliche (Austria).

Marion E. de Jongh Started in 1982 as a teacher in a primary school in the Netherlands. After 2 years she could combine being a director and a teacher. In the nineties she became, next to teaching, a Sears and  escue member with her dogs. Seeing the positive impact of the presents of S&R dogs on bystanders in those days she was curious what the dogs could bring to students. She made many educational trips to England and the USA, visiting schools, Green Chimney and the correctional institute in Woodburn OR to learn from the interventions with dogs. Now, the D.O.G. project is part of Expertise Center Rotonde/ Driegang and Marion and her dogs are present on many schools, coaching students and also teachers. Marion has a big interest in research and practice in AAI and SEL by students.

Riki Verhoeven studied Pedagogy and obtained her MSc in 'E-learning, Multimedia and Consultancy' in Sheffield.  She is researcher and manager at the University of Applied Sciences Utrecht and a PhD student at the chair of Antrozoology at the Open University  Heerlen (Netherlands). Her heart and passion lies  with children with Special Needs and she worked for many years in primary – and secondary special education, most of those years as principal.  In 2000 she started working at the University of Applied Sciences Utrecht and was co-designer and manager of the part-time Pedagogy courses as they are now still offered by the college. During these years, she was, among other things, a member of a research group. And as a dog owner there is a special interest in the benefits of dogs in schools. In 2000 she visited Green Chimneys for the first time and from then she was interested in the human- animal relation and is she now doing her PhD in the field of Animal Assisted Education.

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This conference is a part of the Project ‘Preparation and Training of Human-Dog Teams in Dogs Assisted Education and Therapy’,
co-funded by Erasmus Plus Program of the European Union.