The interns from the Department of Social Intervention tell us about their experience

Carlos Monge Hidalgo is currently studying Psychology at the National Distance University (UNED) where he heard about the Canis Majoris Foundation through the University’s internship program. He has done a total of 225 hours of practice in the Center that we have El Álamo-CAFORTA. In the words of Carlos, this experience has meant for him “to acquire knowledge about the proper treatment of people with brain damage and functional diversity, to know the requirements to be a competent canine therapist and to expand knowledge on the suitability of the type of dog and its learning for Assisted Therapy with Animals, besides contrasting theoretical knowledge with the reality of applied psychology “. On a personal level, he considers that it has been a relevant and transcendent experience, both socially and emotionally, and has made him reflect and understand the meaning of being part of a specific project and its implications. At the professional level, he has acquired skills through observation of therapists and a new perspective through feedback with therapists.

“I imposed myself not to have expectations when starting these practices, if not to consider the moment, the present in each moment, which I believe has given me a clearer vision of the reality of this experience”

How has the experience been with the Dept. of Social intervention team?

It has been especially important for me to share these weeks with the therapists. I can not show more than gratitude for their generosity and patience, and also admiration and respect for their work and commitment.

And the experience with Canine Therapists?

Very satisfying as I usually enjoy the company of animals, here I have been able to do it while learning.

What opinion do you have about the activities that take place in the Canis Majoris Foundation?

I found it interesting to learn about the day to day of the Center and participate in their tasks, also has allowed me to know what it means as a project.

Carolina Martínez Ortiz, who is also studying Psychology at the UNED, will be completing  total of 180 hours doing internships in the Department of Social Intervention. She heard about the Foundation through the existing employment holding pool at the university, later following us on social networks.

On a professional level, it has been her first contact with the real world of intervention with people with functional diversity.

According to Carolina, “After so many years of theoretical study, the great moment of putting it into practice has finally arrived. It is a magical moment and one full of hope. Welcomed by a great team of therapists who show us their day to day and teach us with infinite patience and great dedication each of the details of their day to day. Preparing the sessions with them, observing how they create materials for the therapy sessions and how they perform extraordinary group dynamics has been a rewarding experience. In addition, being able to participate in these sessions has been a process of incalculable value, it is incredible to have been a participant in the bond that is created between users and the therapy dog ​​and how the evolution in diagnoses is always favorable. Professionally it makes you think that here is a project with future for you, that training in this field is one that you can dream about and that everything points to the course being exciting “.

Carolina Martínez Ortiz con Mapa

 “On a personal level it has been very enriching, in my case I do not have any endorsement of knowledge about the world of training and, nevertheless, I leave with much more knowledge than I arrived and not only in relation to the canine world, I have had the opportunity to learn about the fascinating world of birds of prey, I keep as one of the most special moments the walk among these raptors.

What opinion do you have about the activities that take place in the Foundation?

When you join the concern for health and quality of life (especially in people with functional diversity and vulnerable groups) with scientific research and work putting all your heart into it, the result is necessarily very interesting. The growth of this Foundation in my opinion will be exponential especially when they begin to materialize many of the projects that are already in development, in addition to those already existing.

Has your expectations been met?

I recognize that my expectations before arriving were very high. When the desired moment of the work practice arrived,  in my case I was keen to see, and be able to do the more things the better, knowing that we had come in a rather observational role. Here they have given us our own space, they have encouraged us to use our own initiative, they have let us participate with them and they have treated us as equals. They have put all the facilities at our disposal so that we could attend the more therapies the better and even to be able to combine schedules with my other work. My expectations were high, but they have been fulfilled.

How has the experience with the team of the Social Intervention Department been?

Izaskun, Paula, Irene, Esther and Ernesto, along with Mia, Mini, Amazon, Mapa and Moon have been responsible for making this project so special. Not only have they been able to help us in the task of formation, but they have made us feel as if we were part of this family, each one so different, with their particular  personal characteristics and such a good team as a whole. Cooperation and communication always flows between them.

And the experience with the therapy animals?

As has happened with the Social Intervention team, learning how different animals work has given me a more holistic vision. In the end, despite the structure of the sessions being the same for everyone, each of them (therapist and dog) provide a unique touch. Each of the therapy dogs stands out for some adjective: Mini, the rescued Bodeguero (Andalusian wine cellar terrier), stands out for the ease with which it empathizes with users, Mapa conquers everyone with her black beauty and because it is pure love transmitted just by looking into its eyes, Mia , the cinnamon woman, it is a pleasure to see her in session: intelligence to the extreme. Amazon, the teckel, conquers heart because of how funny and slick he is, and Moon, the Jack Russell, is extremely ​​skillful and daring.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *