Anne Clilverd, Chair
Pets As Therapy is an organisation I have admired for many years, combining two passions in my life, pets and working with people. As a community mental health nurse working for many years in the NHS I understand how isolated, lonely and unconnected to the community people can become through no fault of their own. Our pets naturally give unconditional positive regard and acceptance without judgement, they can provide great comfort to us and help us in times of difficulty. I have seen at first hand the tremendous difference my two whippets have made to people I worked with.
As I retired from the NHS in April 2012, I was delighted to be invited to join the board of directors at Pets As Therapy and subsequently to become Chair of the board. My whippet Cesc is a PAT dog and we visit the local primary school as part of the Read2Dog programme. I am always so moved by the progress I see at the end of term, the children seem to blossom in confidence after our weekly sessions. My other whippet Henry worked with me for many years and enjoyed a long semi-retirement, attending special events to the end of his days.
Retirement and moving from London to Oxford gave me time to get back to basics with both of my dogs. I enjoy obedience work, showing at Championship level and not least exploring the Oxfordshire countryside and waterways with my enthusiastic companions.