FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 26, 2015

CONTACTS: Tim Zink, 410-962-4436/ Sue Walitsky 202-224-4524

MEDIA ADVISORY

Cardin in Montgomery County to Celebrate Innovative Service Partnership for Veterans’ Health

Senator to spotlight efforts of Warrior Canine Connection and Maryland DNR to expand therapeutic offerings for veterans at organization’s new headquarters in Seneca Creek State Park

TODAY, Monday, October 26 at 11:15 AM, U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.) will join military veterans, service dogs and leaders of the non-profit organization Warrior Canine Connection and officials from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) at Seneca Creek State Park in Gaithersburg for a discussion on the transformative potential of non-traditional partnerships for veterans’ health.

WHAT: Roundtable Discussion: Loyal Partners for Veterans Health

WHO: U.S. Senator Ben Cardin

Mark Belton, Secretary, Maryland Department of Natural Resources

Warrior Canine Connection, Staff, Program Alumni, Service Animals

Local Officials

WHEN: TODAY, Monday, October 26 at 11:15 AM

WHERE: Seneca Creek State Park
Visitors Center/Park Office

11950 Clopper Rd., Gaithersburg, MD

HOW: MEDIA please RSVP to tim_zink@cardin.senate.gov

Warrior Canine Connection is a pioneering organization that utilizes its Mission Based Trauma Recovery (MBTR) model to help wounded warriors reconnect with life, their families, their communities and each other. Active duty service members and veterans in treatment for psychological injuries interact with WCC’s dogs from birth through adulthood, training these dogs to act as service dogs for their fellow wounded warriors. Warrior trainers address their symptoms of combat stress and benefit from the animal-human connection, while veterans with disabilities receive the support that a service dog can provide.

The organization presently is relocating its headquarters to the Schaeffer Farm Area of Seneca Creek State Park through a unique partnership with the Maryland DNR. The new location will enable Warrior Canine Connection to add an Apprentice Service Dog Training program and offer art and music therapy, as well as acupuncture, along with equine therapy and therapeutic farming and gardening. The area within Schaeffer Farm offers a tranquil, restorative setting close to Walter Reed, providing the ideal location for wounded warriors to transition back into civilian and family life.

“Warrior Canine Connection does incredible work. Its programs offer veterans the chance to train service dogs to help their fellow veterans, providing these brave present and former servicemen and -women with emotional support, companionship and therapeutic opportunities. By enlisting veterans to care for and train their dogs to ultimately serve others, Warrior Canine Connection also is helping to restore a sense of purpose for returning veterans,” said Senator Cardin. “It’s exciting to see the Maryland DNR so determined to find new ways to help our veterans. Once completed, Warrior Canine Connection’s new headquarters in Seneca Creek State Park will provide a clear example of an uncommon way we acknowledge and empower Maryland’s veterans, who have sacrificed so much for all of us.”