Dog therapy day will now be a monthly event on North Shore campus
Greta Kooy, News Editor
Photos by Tae Kim
Capilano University’s North Shore campus will be visited by a few four-legged friends in the coming weeks. Therapy dogs, a popular part of the Capilano Students’ Union’s (CSU) annual de-stress week, will be making two additional appearances by the end of the year.
“It was always something that students wanted more of… It was once a semester to coincide with de-stress week, but we’re lucky to [be working with] St. John Ambulance to be able to make it monthly now,” said CSU Accessibility Justice Coordinator Andrew Dillman. “It’s been great.”
Co-hosted by Dillman and CSU Recreation & Wellness Coordinator Mikko San Ramon, the next CSUrec: Dog Therapy events will be held in the CSU Members Centre located in the Library building on Feb. 26 at 11 am and March 28 at 10 am.
“Luckily it’s a high-impact, low-cost program,” said Dillman. “We get a huge turnout, but it’s totally volunteer-based.”
The previous dog therapy event, which was held on Jan. 31, saw an impressive turnout said Dillman. “We always get a lot of folks coming in, just walking down the hall and seeing dogs in there, people are always kind of drawn to it.”
The St. John Ambulance therapy dog program, sponsored by Subaru Canada, is a “national community service” that “brings joy and comfort to the sick, lonely and those who need a friendly visit.” The services are offered in a variety of community-centred settings including schools, care facilities, libraries and hospitals. A St. John Ambulance information booth will be present at both dog therapy days, alongside CapU organizations and collectives.
“It’s about promoting moments to students, making sure that all of our access needs are taken care of and [that includes] mental health. There’s been a lot of research that shows that animal interaction has a positive effect on our wellbeing,” said Dillman.