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Prairieland Visiting Animals Association

 

Reading Education Assistance Dogs:
How to Join the R.E.A.D. Program

Your dog must be a registered or certified therapy dog through a recognized organization.  R.E.A.D. requires everyone to send a photocopy of their current ID badge or other proof of current renewal to ITA.   This ensures that the R.E.A.D. team has personal liability insurance through their particular group.

You must attend a R.E.A.D. workshop.  The cost is $75.00(includes a manual and lunch).  The workshop is offered by Shirley May.  It’s usually held from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on a weekend.  Contact Shirley at 913-940-1649 OR maymayluvsdals@sbcglobal.net.

Send your R.E.A.D. test and fee to Intermountain Therapy Animals (ITA).   The full fee is $60, but our local group, Prairieland Visiting Animals Association, gets a 20% discount so your lifetime fee is only $50.00.  That’s all there is to it.

Be sure to check out the ITA website at www.therapyanimals.org/R.E.A.D.html for lots of valuable information about the R.E.A.D. program.

Prairieland has members in the following therapy organizations

PET PARTNERS (FORMERLY DELTA SOCIETY) www.deltasociety.org
EVALUATION  $20
VET EXAM WITH FECAL TEST   $40
REGISTRATION FEE $95
TEAM PHOTO $15
PET PARTNERS HANDLER COURSE:  WORKSHOP
ONLINE
$65
$70
RENEWAL EVERY 2 YEARS
INSTRUCTOR CONTACT classes@topekavisitingpets.info

 

HEALING  HEART THERAPY DOGS    www.healinghearttherapydogs.org
EVALUATION (AVAILABLE 3 TIMES A YEAR AND SIMILAR TO PET PARTNERS EVAL WITH AN 3 MIN. SUPERVISED SEPARATION) NO COST, BUT DONE IN CRETE, NE (ABOUT 3 HRS N. OF TOPEKA). 
ANNUAL FEE:  50 + 5 FOR EACH ADDITIONAL DOG
REQUIRED ANNUAL HEALTH FORM GOOD FOR 2 YRS
CERTIFICATION   --
NO PHOTO ID NEEDED --
REQUIRED PURCHASE OF HANDLER SHIRT AND DOG VEST (SENT TO HHD FOR LOGO-COST IS 8.00 EACH)
CONTACT MARTY METZLER mjmetzpt@gmail.com

 

LOVE ON A LEASH     www.loveonaleash.org
EVALUATION   (PET PARTNERS EVAL)  PLUS 10 – 1 HOUR SUPERVISED VISITING  EVALUATIONS $20
CURRENT VET RECORDS  --
INITIAL CERTIFICATION  FEE (INCLUDES ID & VEST) $35 
RENEWAL YEARLY    $20
PHOTOS – 2 FULL BODY AND 1 HEAD SHOT FOR ID BADGE  
CONTACT KAREN SIMECKA
www.topekavisitingpets.info
READ@topekavisitingpets.info

A BRIEF HISTORY OF R.E.A.D
August 2012

The idea of Reading Education Assistance Dogs, or R.E.A.D., was conceived by Sandy Martin and Kathy Klotz in 1999. Both were members of Intermountain Therapy Animals (ITA) in Utah, and they believed that children’s reading and communication skills could be improved by reading to a dog.

In March 2000, ITA did a pilot study at Bennion Elementary School in Salt Lake City. The study found students that read to a dog showed marked improvement in their reading scores.

But these were not just any dogs. ITA used registered therapy animals. These dogs, who volunteered with their owner/handlers as a team, went to hospitals and other health care facilities. And now they were going to schools and libraries as reading companions for children. After the program’s initial success in Utah, it went nationwide. Today, thousands of registered R.E.A.D. teams work throughout mostly the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom.

R.E.A.D. was first approved by Topeka Public Schools after a presentation by Kathy Schlotterbeck in January 2006. We started at Williams Magnet School with two teams and at Highland Park Elementary School with four teams. In 2007-2008, we were in eight schools serving over thirty students.

Prairieland Visiting Animals Association (PVAA) began working in the Topeka-Shawnee County Public Library in January 2007. On April 2, 2007, PVAA was recognized for its efforts by the Topeka Area Reading Association, and presented with the “Celebrate Literacy Award.”

For more information, contact the Prairieland Visiting Animals Association R.E.A.D. coordinator at READ@topekavisitingpets.info.

 

R.E.A.D. DOGS WERE HONORED AT A DEDICATION OF THE LIBRARY’S NEW R.E.A.D. BENCH. A BRONZE SCULPTURED BENCH WITH A LITTLE GIRL READING TO A DOG WAS DONATED BY A RETIRED PEDIATRICIAN, DR. ROBERT PARMAN ON APRIL 18, 2012.

R.E.A.D. TEAMS IN ATTENDANCE WERE BARB SMITH-BUDDY & HUGGINS, MARTY METZLER-HANNAH, LESLIE JOHNSON-BUZZ, DARLINE GEER-PEARL, LEE BOYD-WAVERLY, BITSEY PATTON-ABBY, BETTY ROSE-MAGGIE AND KAREN SIMECKA-EMMY. SHARON FRICKE-RAINBOW (DECEASED). WAVERLY HAD THE RARE HONOR OF BEING THE MODEL FOR THE LITTLE DOG IN THE SCULPTURE.

AT PRESENT, WE STILL HAVE THREE TWO-MONTH SESSIONS A YEAR. EVERY SUNDAY FROM 2-3PM IN FEB/MAR, JUN/JUL AND SEP/OCT, YOU’LL FIND R.E.A.D. TEAMS IN THE CHILDREN’S SECTION OF THE LIBRARY. YOU CAN GET CONFIRMATION BY CALLING 785-580-4400 OR CHECK OUT THE LIBRARY'S WEBSITE, WWW.TSCPL.ORG, FOR LOCATION INFORMATION.