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Family Engagement Opportunities with Animals and Nature!

In honor of our upcoming Winter Break Camp, which is all about compassion to and from animals, here are some great opportunities in the Greater Seattle Area for families!

Check out these opportunities to get involved with non-profit organizations that work for the welfare of animals and on educating the public about safe and positive ways to connect with animals.

Bow Wows and Books - Project Canine

Bow Wows and Books is a children's literacy support program based on Intermountain Therapy Animals' well-respected R.E.A.D. (Reading Education Assistance Dogs) curriculum. Research has shown that children in reading support programs feel less stress when reading aloud to a dog than when reading aloud to a friend. Moreover, children who read to dogs experience higher self-esteem about reading, which may make them more receptive to reading support programs that don't include dogs. And dogs just love being read to!

All participating teams are trained and certified through Project Canine's Connecting Canines Animal Assisted Therapy program. Teams receive an additional three hours of training in therapy-dog-based literacy support and safe handling around children. Our program incorporates elements of our Operation Opie bite prevention program to ensure that children have a safe experience with all dogs.

Bow Wows and Books is open to the public at the Seattle Public Library's Northgate and Green Lake branches on Sundays from 3-4pm. The program alternates between the branches during the school year. Click the link above to view the schedule.

Kitty Literature - Seattle Humane Kitty Literature offers the opportunity for 5-10 year olds to help socialize our cats by reading to them. Participants can read to cats in our community adoption rooms for 20 minute sessions. What better way for your child to help animals and improve upon their own skill set!

When: Monday -Friday (20min sessions)

Where: Seattle Humane - 13212 SE Eastgate Way Bellevue, WA 98005

To learn more or register for a session, call 425-373-5385 or email Registration is required and sessions are offered on a first-come, first-served basis.

Foster a Shelter Animal as a Family - PAWS Foster parents provide temporary care for cats, kittens, dogs and puppies in their own King County and greater-Snohomish area homes. Some animals need as little as two weeks of care, while others may need care for up to three months. Fostering is flexible enough for most lifestyles and PAWS will custom-match the animals to each foster home. By offering your time, energy and home to an animal in need, you prepare the animal for adoption into a permanent home as well as help prevent overcrowding in our shelter. PAWS is always looking for more foster homes, especially throughout the busy spring and summer seasons.

Find Nature in the City: Kids’ Saturdays - Forterra + Seattle Art Museum

How do cities and nature affect the other? Take inspiration from Roxy Paine’s Split and the city buildings surrounded by the Puget Sound to explore how people can help nature in the middle of a city. Bring your family for a fun-filled afternoon learning about art and the environment at the park. Forterra will lead an outdoor adventure – more details coming soon!

Help Restore Native Ecosystems - Mountains to Sound Greenway

Help Mountains to Sound Greenway clean up and restore trails so hikers have a path to stay out of animal habitats, plant and maintain their Greenway Native Plant Nursery (home to nearly 15,000 native trees and shrubs, potted by volunteers and will grow for 1-2 years before being planted in parks and forests along I-90!), and more. Many events are open to families or kids under 13 with a parent or guardian.

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