Animals can teach and bolster feelings of self-worth and value, especially in children. Boyce Turner, an experienced volunteer, recently recounted how Animal-Assisted Therapy changed a little girl’s life.
While visiting at a local elementary school Boyce met a young girl who almost completely nonverbal. Her teacher mentioned that the girl had never uttered a discernible word at school. Timid and frightened at first, she slowly began to warm up to Boyce’s dog Bear. During Bear’s third visit to her classroom, the girl loudly and clearly proclaimed, “PUPPY!”. This extraordinary breakthrough was a direct result of her connecting with Bear.
Hand in Paw’s therapy Teams are powerful motivators for students who struggle with reading and speaking in the classroom. Our teams help children make strides in early intervention centers, K-12 schools, group homes, and after-school programs. Hand in Paw highly values committed volunteers like Boyce and Bear. Our organization depends on them to further our mission and deepen our impact on the communities we serve.