Dream Riders

To provide an opportunity for people with special needs to benefit from equine assisted activities in a safe environment.

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Website: http://www.dreamrider.org
Matching Method: No Matching Funds Reported
Dream Riders offers equestrian experiences to people with special needs so they may enjoy the sport both therapeutically and recreationally. Through certified instructors, dedicated trained volunteers and specially trained horses Dream Riders opens the doors for the development of hidden potential in the riders who become involved in the program. The riders are challenged in many ways to succeed while having a wonderful time working toward their individual goals. Dream Riders operates year-round offering weekly therapeutic horseback riding lessons, day camps to local children's homes in the summer months, un-mounted equine experiences for special groups such as camps for people with special needs, children's homes, special needs classes from local schools and other such groups. Dream Riders offers over 1,100 hours of equine assisted activities throughout the year.
From a couple of parents:
"Claire did an awesome job at the Dream Riders horse show this afternoon, earning herself first and second place ribbons! We just love what Dream Riders has done for Claire's confidence over the last three years! Their caring instructors use specialized, adaptive teaching methods so that Claire can learn horsemanship skills and fully participate in an equine environment."

"Thank you Dream Riders and volunteers for all the SMILES from Skylar today in her first horse show! She is BEAMING PROUD of herself!"

"We are so glad to be a part of Dream Riders! Tyler has really enjoyed his lessons with Mrs. Jennifer and Mrs. Corky. They are so kind and welcoming and are wonderful with all the riders. As are all the volunteers there too! They do a great job of teaching the riders about the horses, while also doing therapeutic exercises and having a great time. Tyler's favorite lesson so far has been learning to lead his horse. He also enjoys making food for them. I love watching him during his lessons - he's always smiling and laughing with his volunteers and seems so carefree in the saddle. We are beyond grateful to be riding under a sponsorship this year. For a family of five on a budget, it has been a blessing to be able to come ride under a sponsor. It is so kind of these sponsors to be willing to help such a worthy cause. And our family is extremely grateful for their generosity!"

"In a day that everything had seemed to turn into a struggle, my husband texts me a picture of our son on Simba, and I truly realize how richly I am blessed. I am so very thankful for the folks at Dream Riders who have worked with my son on Thursday afternoons for years now. To these special people, I greatly appreciate your commitment to the children in the program and their families, and my family and I are thankful for you❤"

"To the instructors and volunteers, I can't thank all of you enough at Dream Riders for being out there for these kids, regardless as to what the weather is! I love to see the faces of the riders and how excited they are to be there. I hope we have more great weather like we had on Monday!"

From a friend of Dream Riders:
"My heart smiled as I watched the "Dream Rider" segment on WIS-TV What an incredible difference you are making in so many lives! You and your family have always been such an inspiration to those around you!"
Contributions help Dream Riders continue to carry out our mission to provide opportunities for people with special needs to benefit from equine assisted activities in a safe environment. Money raised will subsidize lessons along with enabling Dream Riders to continue to offer lessons to foster children living at a local children's shelter and surrounding areas. We expanded the program in Fall of 2016 to include spots for these children. This has proven to be very successful for the children, giving them the opportunity to grow in self-esteem, gain new social skills, learn a unique skill and have a place they belong. Funds will also be used towards providing program horses with the best care possible to keep them healthy and happy to do their job of carrying their special riders. Money raised helps with equipment purchases needed to provide safe therapeutic riding lessons and facility maintenance needs allowing us to continue to provide a safe environment for the horses and riders. We continue to strive for our long rang goal of building a covered arena which would allow us to carry on with lessons in inclement weather and have a cooler place to ride on hot summer days. Dream Riders depends on the success of our three fundraisers. Midlands Gives has turned into our biggest fundraiser and has opened many doors over the past few years.