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Students Instruct Teachers On Dog Safety

4 June 2004

Students Instruct Teachers On Dog Safety

A group of year 12 and 13 students from ACG Strathallan College in Papakura have switched roles with their educators, providing primary and pre-school teachers with a kit to educate children on dog safety.

K9-4-Kids, a company formed under the Young Enterprise Programme, has developed the ‘Dog Safety Educational Resource Package’, which they will market to primary and pre-schools nationwide.

K9-4-Kids last night launched the package, which aims to teach youngsters aged between 3 and 7 years that while dogs are fun, they must be respected and can be dangerous.

Charlie Gillard, 17, Managing Director, K9-4-Kids, says the company decided to focus on the issue of dog safety and young people as it is a social issue which affects many New Zealand communities.

“The recent spate of brutal dog attacks highlighted a gap in the market for a resource package that teachers could use to educate those who we consider are most at risk.

“But what we are very keen to do, is to portray dogs in a positive light. While a small number of breeds can be dangerous, most dogs are gentle and fun loving and make wonderful companions. Children just need to be aware of the possible risks when approaching and playing with dogs and how to minimise the chance of an attack,” he said.

The key component of the Dog Safety Educational Resource Package is focused around a video which, while scripted by K9-4-Kids, has been professionally produced by Screentime Productions. K9-4-Kids approached a number of corporate organisations and local companies to help fund the video production and was successful in securing Nestle Purina Petcare as their primary sponsor. Other local businesses have supported the group including Eatim Vegies Ltd., ACG Strathallan College, Enterprise Franklin, The Lion Foundation Young Enterprise Scheme, Hunters Corner Medical Centre Pharmacy and Balle Bros.

Hercules, the dog who appeared in many advertising campaigns - most famous for his role in Toyota’s ‘Bugger’ campaign - holds a starring role in the video, demonstrating various dog behaviours. Sadly, Hercules passed away of natural causes during the filming of the video. K9-4-Kids has dedicated the video to the memory of Hercules.

The video incorporates the expertise of Animal Psychologist Elsa Flint who has worked with the group to ensure all information pertaining to dog behaviour is correct.

K9-4-Kids will market the Dog Safety Resource Package to primary and pre-schools throughout New Zealand, for $27.50.

The K9-4-Kids Company structure includes Managing Director Charlie Gillard, Financial Director Sarah Balle, Human Resources Director Anja Hackfurth, Production Director Tabatha Vlug and Artistic Director Sarah Mansell.

Compliant with the requirements of the Young Enterprise programme, K9-4-Kids developed a business plan, which reveals the company’s vision and objectives, a market research report, financial report and budget.

Purina ONE Group Brand Manager Murray Keith says the students have shown maturity and community awareness by addressing an issue that affects many New Zealand communities and, with the help of well selected professionals, have come up with a solution.

“The students have done a considerable amount of market research prior to this project and, as a result, have developed a very thorough business plan, which addresses a serious and current issue. The students are very motivated and professional – I am sure there will be businesses currently in operation that could learn a few things from them.”

The resource package is available by either returning an order form, which will be distributed to primary and pre-schools through out New Zealand, by ordering online at www.k9-4-kids.co.nz, or by emailing info@k9-4-kids.co.nz.

Please find attached photos from the launch as well as some still photos, which have been lifted from the video.

Caption: Directors of Young Enterprise Company, K9-4-Kid – from left, Tabatha Vlug, Sarah Balle, Sarah Mansell, Charlie Gillard and Anja Hackfurth - with Great Dane, Hunter.

Caption: Chocolate Lab, Zac, with the video entitled “Fetch and Friends” from K9-4-Kids’ Dog Safety Educational Resource Package.

ENDS

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