Ending Canine Discrimination—and More (Aired on August 23, 2020)

Foundation Manager Nicole Juchem visits RadioRotary via Zoom to describe themany ways that the Animal Farm Foundation improves the way dogs, especially those who have been discriminated against because of appearance or breed, are accepted and also how their other programs training dogs or using their special qualities help people across the United States. Although the Animal Farm Foundation is based in a large farm in Amenia, NY, it works around the nation to rid localities of laws or covenants that discriminate against particular canine breeds or dogs who are perceived as “pit bulls.” The Foundation also takes rescue dogs and trains them to be service dogs that can aid humans with vision, hearing, or anxiety problems. Their Paw of Purpose at Rikers Island Prison enlists prisoners to work with dogs to the benefit of both the dogs and the prisoners. Volunteers for Pets Together are using dogs and other pets to aid persons who have been socially isolated by the pandemic or just by life. There is much more that the Animal Farm Foundation is doing, so listen to this great interview and learn.

Learn more:
Animal Farm Foundation: https://animalfarmfoundation.org/
Paws of Purpose on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10154483000337076.1073741870.51042412075&type=3
Pets Together: https://petstogether.org/
Breed-Specific Canine Discrimination: https://bestfriends.org/our-work/best-friends-advocacy/ending-breed-discrimination

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September 8, 2020 · Posted in Animals, Law, Mental Health  

Medical Reserve Corps of Dutchess (Aired on July 11 and 13, 2020)

RadioRotary interviews (via Zoom) Joe Ryan, the Coordinator for the Medical Reserve Corp of Dutchess County, an organization of 1,004 volunteers currently who provide disaster relief, emergency-medical training, and related services throughout Dutchess County. The Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) is a nationwide organization designed to prepare for and help hand disaster relief, started after the September 11, 2001, attack. The Dutchess Country branch currently has 1,004 volunteers, and also Mr. Ryan has also won the nationally given Mentor Award for its coordination with surrounding county MRCs. The volunteers are almost exactly split between medical personnel and those with no prior medical training. The many preparedness programs offered by Dutchess MRC include classes in stopping bleeding, overdose recovery, suicide prevention, tick safety, and hands-only CPR. During the COVID-19 epidemic, MRC has been part of contact tracing, monitoring victims who are living at home, and providing food or prescription delivery when necessary. Listen to the whole program to learn much more about the services and also about how to volunteer to become a member.

Learn more:
Medical Reserve Corps of Dutchess County: https://www.dutchessny.gov/Departments/Emergency-Response/Medical-Reserve-Corps-MRC.htm
Medical Reserve Corps: https://mrc.hhs.gov/HomePage
Mentor Award: https://www.dutchessny.gov/County-Government/National-Medical-Reserve-Corps-Bestows-Mentor-Award-on-Dutchess-Countys-Joe-Ryan.htm

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Saving Dogs with a Purpose (Aired March 28 & 29, 2020)

Erich Steffensen, Special Programs Manager at the Animal Farm Foundation in Amenia, NY, is the guest for this RadioRotary Program. The Animal Farm Foundation, although it does run an actual farm with rescue farm animals, is primary concerned with dogs—especially dogs that have been called “pit bulls” because of square-shaped heads and bulky bodies, although these are generally of no recognized breed (originally their ancestors were a cross between bulldogs and terriers, but other breeds have joined the mix over the years). One of the goals of the Foundation is to help erase the bad reputation of pit bulls for aggressive behavior. The other goal is to train shelter dogs—primarily pit bulls—for three different types of service: true service dogs, narcotic-recognizing dogs, and family pets. An early part of this training is conducted by prisoners at Riker’s Island, the “Paws of Purpose” program where the dogs go from shelters to 8 weeks at the prison. Formal training for narcotics-sniffers is conducted at a site in Texas; then the trained dogs are donated to police around the nation. Service dogs, including those who aid the hearing and mobility impaired (but not seeing-eye dogs), are trained at the farm in Amenia. All the programs are free to those who adopt the dogs, whether police who take K-9 dogs, mobility or hearing impaired persons needing help, or families that just want a friendly animal. Listen to the program and learn fascinating details about how trained dogs can solve problems and even save lives.

Learn more
Animal Farm Foundation: https://animalfarmfoundation.org/
Service Dogs: https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/training/service-dog-training-101/
Myths and Facts about Pit Bulls: https://www.petfinder.com/pet-adoption/dog-adoption/myths-and-facts-about-pit-bulls/

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April 13, 2020 · Posted in Animals, Service Organizations  

Cari Swanson, Horse Listener (Aired December 28 and 29, 2019)

RadioRotary often discovers remarkable people living in the mid-Hudson region who are not
well known to the general population. Cari Swanson of Wind Rock Farm in Amenia is an
example. When asked if she is a horse whisperer, she replies that she is a horse listener.
Whatever you call it, she is able to train horses to act in movies and on television as well as
teaching rescued horses how to live with and work for humans. Among her horse’s credits are
the white angel horse from the movie Winter’s Tale and the various horses that make a setting
in the year 1900 authentic on Cinemax’s series The Knick. Ms. Swanson’s horse rescue
operation is the focus of the interview. The seven abused horses that she trains at any given
time at the nonprofit Red Horse Rescue will eventually move to their permanent homes when
they have been restored to physical and mental health. There are many ways that horses have
helped humans over the past 6,000 years. Among them, Ms. Swanson and her horses provide
equine-assisted psychotherapy to veterans and autistic children.

Learn more
Cari Swanson enterprises: http://cariswanson.com/
Red Horse Rescue: https://www.redhorserescue.org/
Windrock Farm on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Millbrook-windrock-Farm/1751097151842692
Equine Assisted Psychotherapy–Eagala: https://www.eagala.org/index

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January 5, 2020 · Posted in Animals, Arts & Letters, Mental Health  

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