For the past 6 months or so I have been volunteering on Saturday mornings for a non-profit therapeutic horseback riding program and I love it! This program provides Therapeutic horseback riding for physically and mentally challenged children and adults. I get to the barn around 8:00 am to help groom and lunge the horses before the first riders arrive at 9:00. Then, I help out for the next hour as either a horse walker or side walker. It's really amazing to see how this program really helps the riders become physically stronger, mentally able to better communicate emotions or emotionally improving self-confidence and self-esteem.
I also love spending time with the horses - and I get to "get my horse fix"; smell the smells of the barn and horses, brushing and tacking.
Here are a couple of the horses in the program. This is Big Shrek - he's a 14 year old Percheron, pretty sweet,sometimes stubborn but great with the riders!
This is Little Cloud ("Mini Shrek"). He's 17 and has been with the program for 14 years - what a doll baby!
Here is KC - she's a little moody in the morning but that attitude disappears when they put on the vaulting saddle. She's used for the therapeutic vaulting sessions - very interesting to watch the kids - they are fearless!
I hope to snap some pictures this spring - if it ever gets here! Thank goodness the barn and arena are somewhat heated.