In this episode of Eye on Oshkosh, host Cheryl Hentz spends the hour chatting with Pam Schubert, board member; Jenny Dubie, vice-president; and Brenda Cirricione, president of Journey Together Service Dog, Inc. The organization is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization in Oshkosh, WI, whose mission is to “provide highly trained service dogs to people diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Dogs are placed at no charge with qualified Wisconsin residents.”
Journey Together has developed a unique prison dog program with the Oshkosh Correctional Institution, whereby dogs in training reside at the Oshkosh Correctional Institution. According to their website “Inmates apply to become dog handlers. Those accepted into the program volunteer their time to provide care and training of the dogs. Community volunteers also play key roles in the program. Some go into the prison to instruct training classes for the Inmates. Others take dogs on trips in public so that the dogs can gain the experience essential for them to be service dogs for individuals that have been diagnosed with PTSD.”
The prison dog program was discussed in-depth during the show. The women also explained the differences between service dogs, therapy dogs, and emotional support animals. As an added bonus, the women brought three dogs – Patton, Midnight, and Yates – who are currently in training, and they demonstrated the kinds of things they can do for the people they are eventually matched with.
This organization provides a tremendous service to people suffering from PTSD, as well as to the inmates who are dedicated to working with and training these dogs. You can learn more about Journey Together at journeytogetherservicedog.org. And you can see the show in its entirety here or by following this link: https://youtu.be/DY7PZihDOXI .