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Hands on experience for youngsters at Guide Dog centre in Atherton
10:40am Monday 18th March 2013 in News
VISUALLY impaired children enjoyed visiting the regions' Guide Dog Training School at Atherton where they had a real hands-on experience with the dogs.
The youngsters, aged from three years to 17 attended with teachers and families and were treated to a handling demonstration by Andy Guiel and his faithful dog Delphie.
Children took the opportunity to have a harness walk with Delphie through an obstacle course and dependable Delphie safely guided the children past various obstacles to the end of the course which brought a round of applause from the audience.
Emma Allen-Taylor, engagement officer for Guide Dogs' Manchester mobility team, said: "Children groomed the dogs and learned why this is so important and how this helps with the bonding process between dog and owner. The dogs were lavished with attention and enjoyed all the extra cuddles just as much as the children did.
"As well as being an enjoyable experience, the day gave parents the opportunity to learn more about Guide Dog services. Many of these children may go on to become Guide Dog owners in the future but Guide Dogs offers a lot more than just our famous Guide Dog service.
"We have a range of mobility and orientation services to help children and young people to live as full and independent life as possible."
Helen Wood, Children’s Mobility Instructor for Guide Dogs, who works in conjunction with local authorities, said: “Many visually impaired children can feel isolated from society, the day allowed them to make friends and learn new skills. It brought together families and children that may not normally get a chance to meet, creating a social and support network for these families.”
More information is available from guidedogs.org.uk or call the Manchester Mobility Team on: 0845 372 7409.