Schools urged to back campaign

Schoolgirl Andrea Cooper with guide dog Cara and friends.
Schoolgirl Andrea Cooper with guide dog Cara and friends.

TO mark the new school term, for this week’s instalment in our appeal to sponsor a Guide Dog puppy we take a look at the ways schools and our chosen charity can work together.

The Guide Dogs @ School project offers opportunities for children to learn about the importance of eyesight and the challenges faced by visually impaired people every day.

Teachers can arrange a visit by a speaker, perhaps accompanied by a guide dog or a puppy, and also download a multimedia activity pack. More complex activities featuring design, art, literature and ICT are also available for secondary schools. See for further details. October 1-9 is Guide Dog Week and this year also marks the 80th anniversary of guide dog partnerships in the UK.

To help schools celebrate this occasion and support their important work, Guide Dogs has devised a range of ‘Go For 80’ fundraising ideas specifically for schools.

These include holding a birthday party for Guide Dogs, making a birthday card and uploading designs on to the Guide Dogs Facebook page, holding an 80-minute sponsored silence or exercise session with classmates, organising fun days or a cake sale, or writing an 80-word text, be it a poem about Archie the Guide Dog puppy or a brief statement about what you like best about guide dogs. Guide Dogs needs £46 million every year to continue its work and recieves no Government funding. One guide dog costs around £50,000 over the course of its life and almost 800 dogs are trained each year.