News Detail

Dayton RTA Encourages Kids to Read with Trained Animals Saturday

CONTACT:  Jessica Olson, Marketing Manager (937) 425-8352

(DAYTON, OHIO)… RTA’s newest reading program involves two kinds of “tales”—one in the form of story read by children, and the other is the sort of “tail” that likes to wag. The agency’s Read on RTA program will encourage its smallest customers to hone their skills by reading to animals as part of a special partnership with DOGTORS.

Children will be improving their reading skills by reading aloud to certified pet therapy animals that are part of the DOGTORs program. The session is this Saturday at 10 a.m. at the RTA Northwest Transit Center. 

Pets are very patient, said DOGTORS Chief of Staff Bob Wisenberger.  “They really don’t mind hearing the same story over and over again,” he said.   

Reading aloud gives kids confidence, said Read on RTA Program Coordinator Tracey Hanlin Rohr.  There is less pressure to “get it right” when reading to a dog, she said, “and getting kids to really enjoy reading, to want to read, is our goal with the book distribution program,” she added.

DOGTORS is the premier provider of animal-assisted therapy teams in the Miami Valley.  It is an all-volunteer group of certified trainers and pet therapy teams of dogs, cats, a pig, and even a horse.  The teams travel to hospitals, schools, nursing homes and events, such as Read on RTA, to visit and give comfort to who might need it.  DOGTORS On-Call is a 24/7 emergency service to provide AAT Certified “Pawamedics” teams during disasters, especially when children are involved.

The Read on RTA summer-long book project is on its way to distributing 20,000 new and used children’s books via bright green bookshelves at the five RTA transit centers.  Now in its third year, RTA has joined in the community-wide challenge of helping to prevent “summer slide” among Dayton area students.  Community partners include Learn to Earn Dayton/ReadySetSoar, the Dayton Metro Library, Half Price Books, Project Read, Look-A- A- Book and the Clark County Library. 

RTA also takes books out to kids by visiting places where they gather:  summer feeding sites, apartment complexes, and daycares.  Most of the books are donated, and interested citizens, employees, and stores also donate to the effort.  Kids, their parents and grandparents are welcome to pick up free books at any one of the five RTA transit centers throughout Dayton. 

For more information:

Event:  Saturday, July 16, 10 a.m. Northwest Transit Center (2075 Shiloh Springs Rd.)

RTA is Ohio’s greenest fleet, and serves 3,300 stops on 31 routes throughout Montgomery and parts of Greene County. The agency operates diesel, hybrid diesel, and electric trolley buses that take people to work, school and shopping. Customers ride RTA on more than 10 million passenger trips each year. RTA is committed to providing the highest levels of customer service as the region’s first choice for alternative transportation.