Animal-assisted interventions: The human impact of COVID-19

All over the world practitioners, academics, researchers and students active in human-animal interactions have experienced personal and professional impacts and may face long-term challenges from COVID-19. Illness, death, life restrictions, economic impacts have taken their toll on communities all over the world. As service providers we have coped and adapted our work during the pandemic. The pain and frustration of this trauma experience still challenges us, and requires self-awareness, resilience and interdisciplinary support.

Self-care and recognizing the impact of vicarious trauma for human-service providers is a necessary process to regain the professional upper hand.

Chaired by Michael Kaufmann from Green Chimneys, this webinar brought together a panel of mental health practitioners and an audience of peers to explore themes, share and reflect on this experience. The panel included Dr Aubrey Fine, Unnati Hunjan, Meg Kirby, Dr Veronica Lac and Dr Christine Olsen.

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Below is a video clip of Meg Kirby talking to Michael Kaufmann about the human impact of COVID-19 on AAI services in her country, Australia.  (Meg was unable to join us ‘live’ for the webinar due to time zone clashes, so pre-recorded this clip)