Saturday, May 14, 2011

Rain, snow, sleet or blazing heat

Nothing can dampen the spirit and enthusiasm of children who receive hippotherapy at McKenna Farms in Dallas, Georgia. However, until now, inclement weather could certainly rain on their parade (and inhibit their plans for uninterrupted therapy). We are happy to announce that this will soon change and each child's treatment plan can continue regardless of precipitation.

The new, indoor arena under construction

With walls erected and doors installed, the indoor arena at McKenna Farms is nearly ready for the horses and their eager riders. In June 2011, children, therapists, parents and supporters will host a grand opening for the new all-weather facility.

Come rain, blistering summer heat, or the occasional winter snow, hippotherapy sessions will be uninterrupted from this point on. Continuity of treatment is critical for the children because their skills build progressively. Each session a stepping stone to the next level, the next success.

A little horse with a little rider

Patricia, a new four-year-old patient, is one of the children who will pass through those newly-opened doors. Patricia's speech is delayed and her doctor has written a prescription for hippotherapy. Due to her family's financial situation, that prescription might be worth no more than the paper it’s written on. Thanks to your generous donations to Jacob’s Fund, we are able to provide her with a scholarship so she can begin her treatment plan at McKenna Farms. It is our hope that her therapy will be successful and that Patricia will no longer suffer in silence.

Hippotherapy is known to improve speech and vocabulary. During Patricia's sessions, the horse's gait will allow her to experience movement that strengthens her core. The horse's balanced, rhythmic motion stimulates the underlying physiological systems that support her speech and language functions.

We're looking forward to the day when little Patricia, like many of the children who come to hippotherapy never having spoken a word, starts telling her horse "GO!"

Old Paint preparing for a riding session

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