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No Child Should Be Left Behind in Literacy

By January 29, 2018 No Comments

Di Fowler, Pene Hodge, Gavin Sigley, Richard Patterson, Janine Sigley

With the 2018 school year upon us the team at Story Dogs are relaxed and ready to embrace another year of opportunity. Story Dogs are partnering with Volunteering Services Australia (VSA) so they can expand the organisation and focus on their core mission ‘To make reading fun for children, so they become confident lifelong readers.’

Story Dogs is a reading support program for students between the ages 7- 8 years old who are chosen by the school based on assessment results. Helping over 1500 children each week, with 300 current volunteer Dog Teams participating in 173 schools in NSW, QLD, VIC, TAS, WA, SA and ACT.

“It’s incredibly gratifying knowing Story Dogs can make a difference to a child’s reading. When a child reads to a dog the results are amazing. It’s non-judgemental, the child’s focus improves, literacy skills increase and confidence soars. This program is magical.” Said Janine Sigley, Co-Founder/Managing Director of Story Dogs.

“It’s such a simple concept that is making a real difference. Dogs are ideal reading companions because they promote relaxation and lower blood pressure, do not judge, laugh or criticise and allow children to read at their own pace.” Said Mrs Sigley.

The volunteers and their cuddly canines come with fun, interesting books, specifically chosen for beginner readers. Students are also encouraged to write letters to the dogs at home, which also encourages literacy skills.

“VSA are thrilled to become partners with Story Dogs. The volunteer process is quite extensive due to the safety of children and animals. We have the systems in place to manage such requirements on a large scale which will relieve a lot of the work for Story Dogs.” Said Pene Hodge, Volunteering Services Australia Manager.
To find out more about volunteering with Story Dogs today.