Passed the evaluation, registered your pet, and signed up with us? Congratulations! Time to volunteer!
Therapy animals serve in a tremendous variety of venues and circumstances, including hospitals, nursing homes, schools, libraries, emergency response, and more. Each facility or program serves a unique population and has distinct conditions. We encourage you to find a venue that fits for you and your therapy pet(s) so you are comfortable, feel calm and safe, and enjoy your experience.
Below is a list of sites/programs we are currently volunteering in. If you identify a facility/program you are interested in volunteering with please contact the person listed and let them know you are with Therapy Pets of Northern Arizona. They will be able to assist you from there.
This list is not a comprehensive list of your possibilities. If you prefer to volunteer somewhere else please feel free to contact any facility or program. Please don’t forget to sign-up with us and let us know where you are volunteering.
Please note, if you choose to take your registered Therapy Pet to your work place, you are not covered by the registering organization’s insurance and would need to provide your own.
Paws to Read – www.pawstoread-flagstaff.org
Type of Facility: Library or school
About: Paws to Read is currently the fiscal sponsor for Therapy Pets of Northern Arizona and the program we work with the most. Paws to Read pairs therapy dogs and their handlers with young readers in schools and library environments. Warm brown eyes and doggy grins make all the difference to children’s reading experiences. Our dogs love to be read to! Many children in the Flagstaff community have already benefited from the program and the opportunity to read to such non-critical, caring listeners! Currently there are Paws to Read teams in Flagstaff public schools, local charter schools, and the summer reading programs at the main and east-side public libraries. If you are interested in volunteering with this program, we will work with you to find the best location for your team.
Contact: Alida Dierker (928)-699-4270, firstname.lastname@example.org
Northern Arizona Healthcare – Caring Canines
Location: Flagstaff Medical Center, 1200 N Beaver St, Flagstaff, AZ 86001
Type of Facility: Hospital
More information:Caring Canines is Northern Arizona Healthcare’s dog therapy program. It brings friendly dogs together with patients, families and healthcare staff. Both animal-assisted activities (AAA) and animal assisted therapy (AAT) are provided at Flagstaff Medical Center, and animal assisted activities at the Verde Valley Medical Center.
Contact: Sarah Pena, FMC Volunteer Services at 928-773-2082.
Hospice Compassus – www.compassus.com
Location: Hospice Compassus, 1000 N Humphreys St #220, Flagstaff, AZ 86001
Type of Facility: Hospice
About: Hospice Compassushas an opportunity to offer pet therapy for hospice patients. These patients are all in skilled facilities and assisted living homes in the Flagstaff area, happy to have visitors. Volunteers must undergo approximately 30 hours of training. The training is a self- paced comprehensive attempt to educate volunteers thoroughly about hospice expectations and possible situations they may encounter. Volunteers will be subject to a background check and a TB test.
Contact: Marlene Levtin, email@example.com, (928) 556-1500
Olivia White Hospice – www.vistahospice.org
Location: Olivia White Hospice, 752 N Switzer Canyon Dr, Flagstaff, AZ 86001
Type of Facility: Hospice
About: Therapy teams interested in visiting Olivia White Hospice must be registered with Pet Partners or another national organization, provide your animal’s up-to date vaccination record, get a background check with Vista Hospice, and do a tour of the facility to ensure your and your pet are a good fit.
Contact: Kathy Simmons, firstname.lastname@example.org, (928)-779-1227
Ponderosa High School (W.A.G.S)
Location: Ponderosa High School, 2384 N Steves Blvd #B, Flagstaff, AZ 86004
Type of Facility: School
About: WAGS (Warm And Gentle Support) is a program that helps students understand their emotions and provide skills to cope with them using therapy dogs, who have had many similar experiences. This helps students learn safe, healthy, and positive ways to self-manage stress. Each week, the facilitator reviews the group guidelines and gives a description of the lesson, including a scenario involving the therapy dog. The students journal about similar experiences, and then discuss what they wrote if they feel comfortable doing so. At the end of each lesson, the students receive a tool for their tool bag. On the final day, students take their journal and tool bag with them. (Pet Partners® of Havasu provides training for WAGS volunteers).
Contact: Emily Morton, email@example.com
The Peaks Senior Living Community – www.thepeaks.org
Location: The Peaks 3150 N Winding Brook Rd, Flagstaff, AZ 86001
Type of Facility: Senior Center
About: Therapy teams interested in visiting The Peaks Senior Living Community must be registered with Pet Partners or another therapy animal organization, provide your animal’s up-to date vaccination record, pass a TB test, pass a background check, meet for a one and a half hour orientation at the facility.
Contact: (928) 774-7106
NAU and CCC Stress Free Zones
Location:Northern Arizona University and Coconino Community College
Type of Facility: University
About: This a very popular venue for college students. They take a break from studying and get some love from therapy dogs. The dogs enjoy the attention too!
Contact: Alida Dierker (928)-699-4270, firstname.lastname@example.org
Flagstaff Family Food Center – Reading Room – www.hotfood.org
Location: Flagstaff Family Food Center, 1903 N 2nd St, Flagstaff, AZ 86004
Type of Facility: Reading room in Food Center
About: The Reading Room, located adjacent to the dining area, offers daily literacy programs. Volunteers are expected to read with the children, play games, and help with homework when needed. Most importantly each volunteer will act as a positive role model and consistent presence in these children’s lives. The Family Food Center prefers Reading Room volunteers to be committed to volunteering on a weekly basis, if possible. Please note that the reading room is a very active environment not suitable to all pets. We recommend you visit the reading room prior to volunteering to determine if this kind of environment is suitable for your team.
Contact: Hannah Brand, (928)-526-2211, email@example.com
Boys and Girls Club of Flagstaff – bgcflag.org
Location: Cogdill Recreation Center, 301 S Paseo Del Flag, Flagstaff, AZ 86001
Type of Facility: After school program.
About: After school at the Boys & Girls Club of Flagstaff provides fun, friendship, caring adult mentors and high-impact youth development programming for underserved children and youth. Volunteer activities can include reading with a child, going on a walk around the building, playing with the dog, etc.
Contact: Randy Clark (928) 266-0489, firstname.lastname@example.org
Oncology Center –
Location: 1329 N. Beaver Street, Suite 1
Type of Facility: Cancer treatment
About: The Oncology Center provides chemo therapy to Northern Arizona. Volunteer activities include visiting patients in the waiting room and the chemo treatment rooms and visiting nurses and doctors in their offices.
Contact: Jodie Stark, jodie.stark@USOncology.com, (928) 773-2260
Brook Dale Senior Living and Memory Care – www.brookdale.com
Location: 2100 S Woodlands Village Blvd, Flagstaff, AZ 86001
Type of Facility: Senior living community offering assisted living and memory care for seniors. Volunteer activities include visiting patients in the community room on Wednesday evenings.
Contact: Peter Dreher, email@example.com, (858) 257-7441
Flagstaff Airport – www.flagstaff.az.gov/3632/Airport
Location: 6200 S Pulliam Dr, Flagstaff, AZ 86005
Type of Facility: Airport waiting room. Volunteer activities include alleviating stress and flying anxiety at the terminal.
Contact: Evan Thompson, firstname.lastname@example.org
We are constantly receiving new requests from facilities and programs, and some teams like to find their own niche. It’s worth going to a place that interests you to see if they would like to have a visit from a therapy dog!