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READing Paws, Literacy Nonprofit, Uses Therapy Dogs To Help Struggling Students Learn To Read (VIDEO)

First Posted: 03/ 6/2012 2:51 pm Updated: 03/ 6/2012 3:37 pm

Therapy Dogs

When Jordan Piper was first handed a book, he feared he would never learn to read.

“I thought reading was the hardest thing in the world,” Jordan said in a video testimonial.

But after getting paired with a trained therapy dog, through READing Paws, he gained the confidence and the motivation to continue trying. Today, the elementary school kid tears through books whenever he can, even while brushing his teeth, according to Better World Books, a company that helped fund the program.

The socially conscious bookseller gave a grant to Intermountain Therapy Dogs R.E.A.D., which helped Jordan by way of one of the organization’s local chapters, READing Paws.

Programs like READing Paws are often able to help kids with autism and learning disabilities overcome academic obstacles when they have a patient, calming companion guiding them.

“He helped me sound out hard words and motivated me,” Jordan said. “He never barked.”

In addition to doling out grants, Better World Books donates a book to someone in need every time a customer makes a purchase on the site. To date, the company has raised $10 million for global literacy and local libraries and donated 5.8 million books as of Oct. 1, according the Better World Books site.

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Filed by Eleanor Goldberg  |