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The mission of READing Paws is to improve the literacy skills of children through the assistance of nationally registered therapy animal-owner/handler teams as literacy mentors.
READing Paws utilizes nationally registered animal-owner/handler Therapy Teams who volunteer to go to schools, libraries and many other settings as reading companions for children. The utilization of registered therapy teams is the foundation of READing Paws, in order to ensure that the animals have been trained and tested for health and safety, appropriate skills and temperament, and have been insured for liability.
Within the READing Paws program, all participating Teams have undergone national criminal background checks to ensure the safety of the children that we serve.
READing Paws is an Affiliate of R.E.A.D. (Reading Education Assistance Dogs ) , a program of Intermountain Therapy Animals (ITA) of Salt Lake City, Utah. www.therapyanimals.org/read We are honored to be their first Affiliate Program. ITA launched R.E.A.D. in 1999 as the first comprehensive literacy program built around the appealing idea of reading to dogs, and the program has been spreading rapidly and happily ever since!
- Merilee Kelley
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