Mandel Alum Jane Miller on Maximizing Her Impact on Lives with Ordinary Dogs Through Imagination and Passion

 

September 19, 2018 ~ We caught up with Jane Miller, a Mandel School alumnus who will be part of Alumni Authors Alley on October 12. Miller is a licensed independent social worker, psychiatric service dog trainer, certified dog behavior consultant, celebrated author, and founder of Healing Companions, Inc.  Healing Companions is a non-profit organization dedicated to assisting people with disabilities such as depression, post-traumatic stress, bipolar disorder, anxiety, panic attacks and more, by partnering them with Psychiatric Service Dogs In-training (PSDIT).

Her book, Healing Companions: Ordinary Dogs and Their Extraordinary Power to Transform Lives is a groundbreaking book that provides a window into the new world of Psychiatric Service Dogs (PSDs) and how they can offer some of society’s most vulnerable people a second chance at life. The book is a great read that offers hope and shares stories of how these dogs have changed and enhanced the lives of their human companions.

Jane Miller Mandel AlumnusIn Healing Companions, Jane Miller introduces these amazing dogs and explains how they have helped vulnerable people improve their lives in profound and unexpected ways. PSDs have allowed them to gain self-esteem, self-confidence, assertiveness, and so much more. These dogs provide emotional support, as all dogs do, but they are specifically trained to perform certain tasks unique to each individual’s needs.

Q: When did you discover the ability of dogs to perform the work of PSDs? As a child of divorced parents, I learned early on the comfort of our black lab, Tasha. She was my best friend and confidant, especially through the trials and tribulations of adolescence. But really, Umaya, one of my golden retrievers, set my life trajectory.  At age four, Umaya contracted cancer. I was working at a clinic and seeing clients all day.  Umaya’s oncologist suggested that Continue Reading →

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Cyndi Meets Her PSD Sage

 

PSD Sage meets Cyndi

PSD Sage and her new mom Cyndi

Welcome Sage in joining Cyndi’s family to be trained to be Cyndi’s Psychiatric Service Dog (PSD). We are so grateful to Jennifer Mauger who helped place Sage with us. Her owner felt she would be an amazing service dog so she decided to rehome her so she could share her desire to be trained as a service dog. We are so honored to have Sage join Cyndi on her journey forward.  Thanks everyone that helped make this happen!

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Why You Should Volunteer at Healing Companions

Interview with Emma Benner, Volunteer and Board Member

Working with Healing Companions has been an amazing experience – but don’t just take my word for it! Read about why one of our volunteers and board members loves volunteering at Healing Companions.  Sara Stajcic

Volunteer Emma BennerWhat motivates you to volunteer?

Emma: I am motivated to volunteer because I love knowing that I have an impact on the community and am able to help an organization that I am passionate about. It is fun to work with the other volunteers in this organization.

Why did you choose to volunteer at Healing Companions in particular?

Emma: I decided to volunteer because I love working with both people with disabilities and dogs. I love the healing powers that service dogs have on people that are struggling. They can change their whole life around. This organization is helping to place service dogs with people that need them and I am so encouraged to do my part in helping to grow the organization and help as many people as possible.

Could you tell me a bit more about the work you do at Healing Companions?

Emma: My primary responsibility is social media marketing through Twitter. I come up with Continue Reading →

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Bonner Volunteer Fair

 

Bonner Volunteer FairA huge thank you to Oberlin College’s Bonner Center for inviting Healing Companions, Inc. to participate in the Volunteer Fair on 9/6/18.  We had a truly amazing time with over twenty-five folks signing up to volunteer with us. I also want to thank Oberlin Northwest bank for donating free water bottles, frisbees, key chains, shirts and goodie bags.  Ahava, my golden retriever and co-therapist, attracted crowds to our table and provided an afternoon of pets, cuddles and love showered upon them. I am so grateful to the Bonner Center and everyone that stopped by to learn all about Healing Companions, Inc. and those who wanted to join us and spread the word through their social networks.

With gratitude, Jane

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