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Our Vision

Circle of Change strives to be the innovative provider of life improving dog training and handling experiences for people, especially those suffering from traumatic events.

Our Mission

With dogs as the vehicle, it is the mission of Circle of Change to educate, enhance, improve, and positively affect people’s lives.

At Circle of Change, we carry out this mission through the training and handling of dogs. A dog’s behavior is the perfect reflection of the skills and efforts of its handler. With this in mind, we have learned that the rewards are three fold.

Veterans Dog Program –a fantastic life improving innovation for our veterans

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) have been identified as the long lasting legacies of the recent Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts.  We have developed a program that is making a difference for veterans struggling with these issues.

This Program serves veterans of all conflicts who are challenged, disabled, in transition, and/or suffer from the effects of PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) or TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury). Admission to the program requires a referral from a VA mental health professional.   Licensed mental health professionals have found this Program to be as, or more, effective than some of the more traditional therapies.  For more information, click the link above for the Veterans Dog Program.  To support this Program, click the “SUPPORT US” link.

    By Handling Dogs a Veteran Can Learn:

  1. Communication skills

  2. To establish and reinforce limits

  3. To set realistic goals

  4. To recognize, accept, value and appreciate differences

  5. To be fair, firm, consistent and praise for good effort

Training and rehabilitating dogs allows handlers to develop managerial skills, and provides practical application for these very important life skills

The Dogs can learn:

  1. To trust, respect, have confidence and cooperate with their human leader(s)

  2. To make decisions that will be acceptable and safe enough for the dog to be considered a polite, respectful, calm and valued companion.

  3. To replace any and all negative and unsafe habits with new behaviors that are positive, useful, safe and more appropriate.

  4. The skills necessary to become a valued and dependable companion dog.

The Public Benefits:

  1. Veteran handlers are able to reinforce, practice and fine tune the skills the dog has been taught.

  2. Then by example, veteran handlers are able to share information and practice the life skills they have learned from training the dog.

For more information on Circle of Change,
explore our website or contact Louis Matjasko, Captain US Navy, Retired
Executive Director, at
or call 815-262-1491

Mailing Address:  P.O. Box 9, Rockton IL 61072

EIN: 20-2316300

  The program is not a source for training or providing dogs or service dogs for veterans. 

Website Designed By Frederick Boyd