Oct 30, 2012 / 4:04 am
After three years of spectacular program expansion, Arion Therapeutic Farm is going public with a bid to cover its riding ring before Christmas.
Working with coverall experts Pacific Apex Structure Inc., founder Heather Henderson and her board of directors have set a $100,000 target to build a safe, cost-effective covered arena.
“Putting a cover on the ring is critical as it will allow the therapeutic riding program to run year-round, providing our clients the valuable therapy and recreation they need to stay healthy,” said Henderson. “Our clients have come to rely on their time in the ring and it has been very difficult for Arion to meet that need in the winter months without a covered riding area on the property.”
Therapeutic riding offers a wide range of physical, cognitive and emotional benefits. The horse’s stride closely resembles the human gate, enabling riders to strengthen critical muscle groups without actually walking. And being on the horse offers the sensation of mobility to those without.
Logan Miller, a 17-year-old with Neurodegenerative Disorder, uses the program to stave off the advance of his condition. In addition to a cognitive impairment, his muscles are slowly degenerating and he needs to continue riding each winter to stay as physically active as possible.
“Not a week goes by that Logan doesn’t look forward to his day at the farm,” said his mother, Debra Miller. “Covering the riding ring isn’t an extra for us. Without those three months of time on the horse, Logan could start to lose the strength he’s gained riding.”
Another client, nine-year-old Jayes Derriksan, has Down Syndrome and came to the farm because it offered a winter recreation option via a nearby covered ring.
“He couldn’t play hockey. He didn’t ski. There was no winter sport that he was capable of that he could do on his own and really feel wonderful about,” said Suki Derriksan, his mother.
Both Jayes and Logan depend on therapeutic riding, but the farm can no longer depend on rented space that takes 20 minutes to walk to, as demand for its program is increasing.
Financially and philosophically, adding a covered riding ring is critical to life at the farm this year. As such, Arion is appealing to individuals and business owners who can help raise the $100,000 to finish this project before the snow flies. Sponsorship packages might include:
- ¨Gifts in Kind of excavation and electrical contracting
- ¨Foundation Level $5000+ (Tax receipt, website recognition, building and main entrance signage)
- ¨Roof Raising Level $10,000+ (Tax receipt, website recognition, media exposure, building and main entrance exposure)
But in the spirit of the season, the farm’s people are willing to talk turkey. Please contact Heather Henderson at 778-477-1006 and see the website for information or to donate.
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