C.H.A.M.P. Assistance Dogs, Inc. and the Missouri Department of Corrections have partnered on two great win-win programs at the Women's Eastern Reception, Diagnostic and Correctional Center (WERDCC), in Vandalia, Missouri.
Our staff travel to the prison each week to work with a specially selected group of women offenders.
The offender-trainers help us train our dogs, plus:
The Champ Program is our service dog training program. The women help us raise and train the dogs on everything from basic skills through advanced service dog skills. The dogs live on-site in their trainers' rooms, and accompany their trainers throughout the prison campus.
Champ to the Rescue is our rescue dog program. These dogs come from local animal shelters, and receive 8-12 weeks of training in basic skills and house manners, giving them a 'second chance' at a forever home. The offender-trainers gain training experience by working with a larger number and variety of dogs.
Read "A Volunteer's Viewpoint" about a CHAMP volunteer's visit to the prison.
Are you or your organization Considering a Prison Dog Program?