Our story – how we started…………
Our City Is On Fire!!!!!!
The Waldo Canyon fire started approximately four miles (6.4 km) northwest of Colorado Springs, Colorado on June 23, 2012. On June 26th, the fire blew up and raced down the foothills into the Mountain Shadows area of Colorado Springs. It was not declared 100 percent contained until July 10, 2012. Over 32,000 residents were evacuated, two souls were lost, and 347 homes destroyed.
Two therapy dogs and their handlers visited displaced residents in hotels and evacuation centers. They also spent time with first responders. The dogs provided comfort and distraction to those dealing with the tragedy. In fact, the reception was overwhelmingly positive! Current Executive Director Nancy Trepagnier – one of the original volunteers – saw the need for well-trained therapy and crisis handler/dog teams, the GO TEAM was started, and the rest is history!
Fast forward one year: The first class of GO TEAM therapy dogs started training. During a training session, the Black Forest fire started. The teams jumped into action and worked a special event for those Black Forest residents who had lost homes or been evacuated. The teams also visited with first responders, and brought them welcome relief from the long hard days and nights they worked to stop the fire.
Growth of GO TEAM
The GO TEAM has grown significantly from those 2 original dog/handler teams. To date, over 1000 teams have gone through the training program! We are nationwide and are continuing to grow.
GO TEAM Dogs
The dogs on GO TEAM are evaluated and recommended for our training program. Dogs must pass an AKC approved Canine Good Citizen (CGC) test and be at least one (1) year old prior to attending the class. Our two-day class includes real life situations such as working in assisted living and nursing homes, library/literacy Events, special community events, TSA airport security drills, elevator/stair drills, airport comfort, interacting with first responders, and much more…..
When you go through GO TEAM training, you will learn what to do and most importantly, what not to do, with your therapy/crisis/airport dog.
Training is Forever
The GO TEAM philosophy is simple: “Training does not stop after one class, it continues for a lifetime.”