What We Offer
Animal Companions offers therapeutic visits by volunteers and their dogs to people in hospitals, nursing homes, special needs facilities and schools. Each accredited team provides regular, non-judgemental visits to a facility, bringing pleasure to residents, staff, families and visitors. Most teams provide Animal Assisted Activities, but some may work with health professionals in a facility to provide Animal Assisted Therapy.
We also offer a Paws for Safety program which aims to teach lower primary school children appropriate ways of interacting safely with dogs.
Members and their dogs are assessed to ensure they have what it takes to go visiting. Training is provided for volunteers at a half-day workshop, and an experienced buddy accompanies the new volunteer team on their first visit to their facility. Each accredited team is covered by Animal Companions for public liability insurance and volunteer insurance.
The timing and frequency of visits depend on the availability of the volunteer and the requirements of the facility. Many volunteers have work or other commitments, so while some may visit once a week, others may visit fortnightly or less often. Some facilities have more than one visiting team, and some volunteers visit more than one facility.
National Police Check for Volunteers
The Department for Communities, together with the Western Australian Police, has developed a program enabling eligible Western Australian volunteers and volunteering organisations to receive a National Police Check at a reduced fee per volunteer checked. The program includes any organisation involving volunteers, including state government and private sector organisations. The program is designed to help organisations adequately screen volunteers working in positions where they provide services to vulnerable people (i.e. children and young people, people with disabilities and seniors).
If your facility requires a Police Check for one of our visiting volunteers please see National Police Check for Volunteers
Please note that Animal Companions is not able to apply for a Police Check on your facility’s behalf. The checks are not currently portable from one organisation to another and the information can only be used by your facility and the volunteer.