Story Dogs is a fantastic charity running a literacy program in primary schools Australia-wide for free. Each week, well-trained dogs and their volunteer owners help students with reading in a one-on-one setting. Story Dogs Australia has 509 volunteers helping more than 2500 children each week.
When a child reads to a dog in a non-judgemental setting, the child’s focus improves, their literacy skills increase and their confidence soars. The accepting, loving nature of dogs gives this program its magic. It helps children relax, open up, try harder and have fun while reading to a friendly, calm dog. The outcomes are amazing!
The Story Dogs program was introduced to the Mornington Peninsula about three years ago and has been embraced by primary schools from Frankston to Sorrento. The success of the program has seen it grow rapidly from two volunteers to 26 volunteer/dog teams in 17 primary schools
Story Dogs is very excited to introduce four new volunteers who have just started taking part in the program with their beautiful dogs. The volunteers say the rewards are endless and the dogs just love the attention; when they are helped into their special vests by their owners they get visibly excited knowing they are going to school to get lots of pats and attention.
The charity receives no government assistance, and the dogs are sponsored by Peninsula businesses and organisations. This gives the charity a wonderful community feel — a team effort to help our children.
If you have a calm and friendly dog and would like to volunteer, Story Dogs would love to hear from you. Check out the website www.storydogs.org.au to find out how you and your dog can get involved.