The St Phillip’s Christian College Dale Campus in Waratah has welcomed a wellbeing dog to their school to help combat student anxiety and Rosie is the talk of the town.

The ‘Afternoons with Deborah Knight’ show on 2GB Radio was kind enough to interview Principal Bronwyn Thoroughgood on R U OK?DAY to discuss the impact our Dogs Connect program has had on the wellbeing and anxiety levels of students.

Listen to the ‘good news’ story in full now.

The community is home to two campuses. The Dynamic Alternative Learning Environment is designed for students who have an Autism Spectrum Disorder, social and emotional difficulties or mild intellectual disability. The college is also an accredited special assistance school for young mums and dads that supports students with parenting and life issues as well as encouraging the successful completion of their studies.

Staff members have been hoping to integrate a wellbeing dog into the school environment for quite some time to help students manage anxiety levels, depression and PTSD. They discovered Dogs Connect whilst on Twitter and we were able to support the implementation of this program in NSW.

Anxiety levels improve thanks to Rosie

In a recent situation with a student Principal Bronwyn said, “She [Rosie] walked past, had a little sniff of his shoes … brushed on his fingers, and he looked up, and smiled, and said ‘I think she likes me’.

“It’s the first time … that I’ve seen that student smile at school.”

As Rosie spends her time between both campuses, she has been able to deescalate student anxiety across many age groups, “we have a school for young parents and they come to school highly anxious about their life circumstances and we’re seeing an incredible benefit for them as well having Rosie onsite.”

Big thanks to 2GB Radio for sharing this story on such an important day.