Launch of Educate Together Lesson Plan – funded by PetAware

Students and Principle of Carrigaline Educate Together School, Paul Rowe – CEO Educate Together, ISPCA, Dogs Trust, Veterinary Ireland, Fred Karlsson founder of DoneDeal and Simon Coveney, Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine. This morning in Carrigaline Educate Together School in Cork we had the pleasure of launching the DoneDeal PetAware funded Educate Together Lesson Plans. Lisa O’Donovan (ISPCA) & Timmy at this mornings launch. Over the past two years this novel education initiative has been supported closely by Dogs Trust, the ISPCA and Veterinary Ireland, who today along with Educate Together have made the lesson plans available for all primary school teachers in any school on their respective websites. The programme will also be hugely beneficial for welfare groups to use as part of their humane education programmes.These plans are the first comprehensive animal welfare primary school curriculum to be developed in Ireland and have been developed to teach responsible pet ownership to primary school students. Fred headed down to Cork this morning with Sam his dog to meet with Educate Together, the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Simon Coveney, as well as key members of all the groups involved in developing this program. Sam enjoying the attention at this morning’s PetAware funded Educate Together Lesson Plan launch You can see the lesson plans on our DoneDeal PetAware funded projects page or on any of the websites of the groups involved: Educate Together Veterinary Ireland ISPCA Dogs Trust Comments from todays launch: Minister Coveney: “I think it is very important to raise awareness and provide education for the important issue of animal welfare, which is why I am so pleased to be here today. Educating children from a young age about responsible pet ownership is a task that is often overlooked, and I commend the efforts of Educate Together, DoneDeal and all their supporters who are so clearly dedicated to the cause of animal welfare. This is a very welcome development for the country that can be easily rolled out in schools.” Mel Thornton, Principal, Educate Together School Carrigaline: “This is a very exciting event for the children here at Carrigaline Educate Together that we are delighted to be hosting. Our pupils are greatly looking forward to sharing their lesson plans and showing off the work they have done to date on our animal welfare curriculum. The students also have a wealth of questions for the organisers themselves, and are excited to demonstrate the knowledge they have gleaned to date from this important programme. We hope that this event will greatly benefit our students and at the same time raise awareness for the important issue of animal welfare.” Fred Karlsson, Founder of DoneDeal: “DoneDeal, through its PetAware Project, has been thrilled to support and fund such an important programme for primary school students. Animal welfare has always been very important to us, and I really believe that learning responsibility with animals and pets from a young age plays a huge part in how you interact with them for the rest of your life. It is endearing to see the students of Carrigaline get involved with their lesson plans so enthusiastically, and I am sure this programme will only go from strength to strength in the coming years.” Paul Rowe, CEO, Educate Together: “Educate Together is delighted to have worked on the development of this unique and important primary school programme. As educators, we are now engaging with the social and emotional life of families as never before. Through the developments of these lessons, we have found that the involvement of pets in the classroom can have a transformative influence for children who encounter social and emotional challenges in the usual social environment. Now that the lessons are online, they will be available to any teacher or educator, anywhere in the world.” Vivienne Duggan, President of Veterinary Ireland: “Veterinary Ireland and the members of its Veterinary Ireland Companion Animal Society (VICAS) were delighted to be approached by DoneDeal to participate in this project to provide learning materials and resources for Educate Together schools. The entire project, aimed at allowing Educate Together pupils to learn about animals and their care, fits perfectly with Veterinary Ireland’s own aims to provide education and information to animal owners throughout Ireland, in order to maintain and improve the health and welfare of the animals under Irish veterinary care. The lesson plans formulated by Educate Together, DoneDeal, and the other partners are very well structured, practical and educational, and Veterinary Ireland is proud to endorse the lesson plans and resource materials to allow pet owners to make informed choices relating to their pet’s health and welfare.” ISPCA CEO, Dr Andrew Kelly: ‘’The ISPCA is delighted to be working with Dogs Trust, Veterinary Ireland and Educate Together on this very important animal welfare education initiative being delivered in Educate Together schools. Irresponsible pet ownership is a significant problem in Ireland and only by educating and changing the attitudes of the next generation of pet owners can we hope to improve animal welfare in this country. These lesson plans to be delivered as part of the curriculum and will allow children to understand the responsibilities involved in owning an animal and will give them the knowledge they need to source and care for pets responsibly. I hope that this initiative can be rolled out to all schools in Ireland over time and that irresponsible pet ownership will eventually be a thing of the past.’’ Fiona Simpson, Senior Education Officer, Dogs Trust: “We are very excited to be part of this great initiative and truly believe that educating young people of today into becoming the responsible dog owners of tomorrow is the way forward for animal welfare in Ireland.  We have worked very closely with Educate Together, and other stakeholders to compile a set of school lesson plans that incorporates the Dogs Trust Ethos and focuses on caring for animals and animal welfare.”