We hope you are enjoying your summer. The Board Members at SDTR would like to communicate exciting updates and share with you the Therapeutic Riding Center’s achievements, which will bring a new higher level of service to our community. So please Saddle Up as we share some of our highlights.
This is an exciting time of wonderful growth for SDTR. We have been following our 3 -year Strategic Plan that our Instructors, Volunteers, and Board Members participated in creating. It includes action items and a Dashboard to track our progress towards meeting our goals and objectives defined in our Strategic Plan. Many of the updates below are based on that Plan.
SDTR has received Premier Accreditation from PATH (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship, International). This is a very significant achievement. It is based on a rigorous on-site inspection of SDTR’s facility, records, administrative procedures, programs, horse care and applicable activity and service standards. This Accreditation is a voluntary process that recognizes PATH International Centers that have met established therapeutic riding industry standards. SDTR is now recognized as one of the Premier centers which offers PATH Certified Instructors and follows clearly documented policies and procedures, and safety protocols.
In addition to our Accreditation we have established a new partnership with the University of Delaware. U.D. Equine Therapy/Equine Specialist students can now include SDTR as one of the site options for volunteering, mentor training, and internships -- again, taking the visibility and credibility of SDTR to a new level.
We have strengthened our Social Media Platforms and focused on increasing our communication with all of our participants and supporters who are part of SDTR.
From a Financial Perspective, in May we held the Kentucky Derby Fundraiser which was a huge success, thanks to all of you. We had a goal of clearing $10K after expenses and due to contributions received, were able to clear $33,500, which is being used to support our programs for our riders.
SDTR received a Grant from the State of Delaware of $183,000 for capital projects. We want to share with you how that Grant will be utilized.
- SDTR is in the process of constructing an outdoor riding arena as an addition to our accessible riding center.The arena will adjoin the arrival center and utilize its mechanical lift. We will provide a pathway and covered viewing area for family and guests. It will allow participants to ride outside, when weather permits, and double the number of lessons we can teach simultaneously. We plan to also upgrade the pasture run-in sheds to accommodate two new horses who are accustomed to living full-time in the pasture, adding feed and hay storage rooms, electric service and water supply. This will enable our volunteers to more easily provide the horses with feed, hay and fresh water daily, and enable volunteers, farriers and veterinarians to tend to the new therapy horses as needed.
- SDTR will also be able to purchase a horse trailer, which will enable us to transport horses in emergencies, for medical needs, or for special events.We have the opportunity to purchase a used trailer in excellent condition from friends of an SDTR supporter.
- Finally, SDTR will equip its multi-purpose room, which adjoins the barn office, providing work stations and technology for our instructors and volunteers to use when entering information into our Salesforce-based automated information system, Equi-Force.Equi-Force is customized for use by equine assisted services programs, and it securely stores and retrieves information about SDTR’s participants, lessons and volunteers. This will allow instructors to enter information online immediately after lessons, facilitating planning for subsequent lessons and documenting progress toward participants’ individual goals over time.
Please know that all of us deeply appreciate and treasure your many contributions to SDTR over the years. It has enabled is to keep “Improving Lives, One Stride at a Time”!