Horse therapy gives hope to disabled children

by Paint and Quarter Horse Foundation Bulgaria
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Horse therapy gives hope to disabled children
Horse therapy gives hope to disabled children
Horse therapy gives hope to disabled children
Aya enjoying a ride on beautiful Fany
Aya enjoying a ride on beautiful Fany

We have great news from Paint and Quarter Horse Foundation Bulgaria (PQHFB). Thanks to all of you we have started to provide therapeutic riding sessions to seven children with special needs in the Sofia area.

We love meeting the children and their families and seeing them interact with the horses and enjoy the fresh air and wide open spaces at “Four Ranch”. 

Our work, however, is not done. In fact we are only getting started. We want to be able to help more children and families in Bulgaria and have them benefit from the healing power of our beautiful Paint and Quarter horses. Our next goal is to create a horse therapy centre for residential stays for our children and families. Surrounded by horses, the calmness of the mountains, and crystal clear air the children will be able to have regular therapeutic sessions throughout their stay. Parents will benefit from well earned respite care.

Please help us by pledging your support to our new projectBuild a Horse Therapy Centre for Disabled Children

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A small part of our Program
A small part of our Program

Along with the preparations for the final exams before the International Professional Association for Therapeutic Riding, the team of Paint and Quarter Horse Foundation Bulgaria has been working on our first Program for therapeutic riding for children with disabilities. The Program is developed for 7 children and their parents. The goal is to offer them therapeutic riding lessons for free, so they do not have to burden themselves financially.

We are proud to announce that with the support of all of you and the young people from the US Ambassador’s Youth Council Bulgaria the Program will begin. We are excited to meet and be with all the children in an attempt to make their life healthier and broaden their horizons!

The instructors of PQHFB still have to pass the last stage of the instructors course but there is no doubt it will be happening with your help!

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Paint and Quarter Horse Foundation's future certified instructors are currently preparing for the last phase of the examination procedure before the examination board of the International Professional Association for Therapeutic Riding. It involves performing and videotaping professional riding skills and instructing a lesson of two. The first component requires training a horse to perform in a specific manner while the rider does a series of exercises. The second component is more complicated as it shows the work the instructors have done with the students in the past. That final stage of the examination requires months of practice and training and together with the rest of the team we could not be happier to start it!

To follow the standards of PATH Intr. PQHFB is working together with its partners to adapt all their facilities. Being a long term investment it requires a lot of efforts and professional assistance. The organization also tries to follow the national regulation for adaptable environment.

In addtion, for the past few months Paint and Quarter Horse Foundation Bulgaria has been working towards gaining more support of the organization’s mission. The goal still is to gather the remaining funds to cover the last stage of the certification of our two instructors.

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The students, the mentor and a working equine
The students, the mentor and a working equine

Paint and Quarter Horse Foundation Bulgaria will be helping children with disablities! Thanks to our donors and supporters, the future therapeutic riding instructors – Mina and Veronika, are now in the final phase of their certification with the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH Intr).

During the last months they successfully took a number of exams on the Standards of PATH Intr regarding management of therapeutic sites; safety of riders, equines, instructors and other personnel; necessary equipment; precautions and contraindications for different medical conditions of riders; other therapy related matters. Mina and Veronika, also, completed the mandatory First Aid/CPR certification which involved theoretical and practical part.

Following the PATH Intr procedure for certification of therapeutic instructors the two had to attend an on-site teaching under the guidance of a certified instructor. They were fortunate to have Ma Teresa Llòria i Llàcer agreed to be their mentor at Fundacio Terapia a Cavall, Barcelona, Spain. She is a PATH Intr therapeutic riding instructor since 1996 and a Certified Therapist with the American Hippotherapy Association. Teresa dedicated one entire week to pass on her deep understanding of therapeutic riding for people with special needs. And she did all that because of the shared passion of helping as much as possible!

There are just a few more steps to be undertaken in order for Mina and Veronika to complete their professional education. We at the Paint and Quarter Horse Foundation Bulgaria will follow the example of Teresa and so many others that provide therapeutic riding for children with disabilities. Only a small amount of money - $678 and a lot of efforts stand in our way to help Vicky and many others. We are so close to achieving that goal!

Just before practicing emergency dismount
Just before practicing emergency dismount
Mounting from a ramp
Mounting from a ramp
Preparing a horse next to a mounting block
Preparing a horse next to a mounting block
Mounting from a standard mounting block
Mounting from a standard mounting block
A mentor always has something more to teach
A mentor always has something more to teach
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Proud members of PATH International
Proud members of PATH International

Thank you all! We have just made the first big step towards our common goal, namely to help children with disabilities in Bulgaria receive regular horse therapy.

After a lot of consideration and negotiation Mina and Veronika became members of PATH Intr. PATH Intr stands for Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International. This is an international organization found in 1969 in the US which ‘is a global authority, resource and advocate for equine-assisted activities and therapies and the equines in this work that inspire and enrich the human spirit’’. The organization offers not only certification but continuing education for its members and professional enrichment. It also shares the same vision as The Paint and Quarter Horse Foundation Bulgaria that equine-assisted activities and therapies help individuals with special needs.

Mina and Veronika applied for the certification program to become Therapeutic Riding Instructors.  The program is divided into two parts and can last up to two year. Thanks to the funds from our campaign we were able to cover the costs of the memberships and the first part which includes a series of exams, First Aid/CPR certification and gathering of other documents. Unfortunately, we are still not able to afford entirely the second part of the program which involves spending a week at a PATH certified center, recording of our skills, and the certification itself. There is just a little bit more funding needed.

In the spirit of the upcoming Holidays we are hopeful that with the help of kind people like all of our contributors we will be able to gather the remaining 1078 $.

We wish everyone warm and happy Holidays filled with laughter, joy, and wonderful miracles!

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Organization Information

Paint and Quarter Horse Foundation Bulgaria

Location: Sofia - Bulgaria
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Mina Raduncheva
Sofia, Bulgaria
$15,727 raised of $29,000 goal
 
138 donations
$13,273 to go
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