OCTOBER, 2017: It has been a busy, rewarding summer! We are half-way through with our third session. This ended up being a 4-week session due to unknown weather conditions once we hit November. After November 1st, we will offer riding opportunities on a case-by-case basis depending on availability of volunteers and weather conditions.
I'm happy to report that we started in June with five riders, and we started this session with 10 riders! We are growing slowly and that is good! We were blessed with the donation of retired Polo horse in July. His name is Apache and he has been a great addition to our therapy herd! He is a long-legged appendix Quarter Horse, and he loves attention!
We are looking forward to our Harvest Hoedown on October 22nd! Our Hoedown Committee has been busy planning and it is really exciting to see and hear all the things they have come up with!
We continue to seek new opportunities to serve and to grow our donor base. Both aspects of the program must be developed in order for us to be successful.
We're looking forward to taking a short break over the holidays and then we'll start preparing for the Spring start-up! Please remember to support BREATHE! We are definitely impacting lives!
APRIL 25, 2017:
Our first session will start June 19, 2017. This will be a 6-week session (no lessons the week of July 4th). Riders will be assigned a one-hour lesson each week of the session. The cost of a six-week session is $150, nonrefundable, payable in advance. Please download the registration packet (available by clicking on the blue box above). Once you have your registration packet completed, contact us for an appointment! Please note we must have a physician's statement completed before you can begin lessons. So you will want to give yourself enough time to obtain your physician's approval and signature. There will be two additional sessions in 2017. Dates of all sessions are as follows:
Session 1: June 19-Aug 5 (off week of July 2-8)
Session 2: Aug 14-Sep 23
Session 3: Oct 2 -Nov 18 (off week of Nov 5-11)
UPDATE: MARCH 28, 2017, SAUK COUNTY PLANNING AND ZONING COMMITTEE APPROVED OUR REQUEST FOR A CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT! THIS MEANS WE CAN PROCEED WITH THE PLANS TO BUILD THE TRAINING AREA FOR OUR RIDING CENTER!
NEWSLETTER #5 - March 15, 2017
We have so much to be thankful for and so much to look forward to!
In February, the Town of Greenfield voted to recommend approval of our Conditional Use Permit. This means they will not oppose the County granting us the Permit. Our application is scheduled to be considered by the Sauk County Zoning Committee on Tuesday, March 28, at 9:00 am. Please keep this important step in your thoughts and prayers, as everything else depends on the approval of the Conditional Use Permit!
I’m excited to say that I have started a waiting list of potential participants for our first pilot session. I hope to start the session in mid-to-late June. Costs and schedule have yet to be determined. If you or someone you know, knows of a potential student, please have them contact me! I can be reached through the Contact page on the website, or through our Facebook page.
Volunteer packets are now posted on the website, on the Volunteer page. If you are interested in volunteering, please print out the packet, fill it out, and stay tuned for the orientation schedule which I’ll be publishing soon!
We are going to start property clean-up and reconstruction in April and expect it to continue until….well…it never really ends, does it?! So if you’re ready to get out of the house and get those muscles and joints moving again, stop by and lend us a hand! Which reminds me, we’re going to be getting ready for our ARENA GROUNDBREAKING OPEN HOUSE AND FUNDRAISER, on SATURDAY, MAY 13, from 11:00 am – 2:00 pm. Come and have some fun with us!
We are seeking donations for a silent auction or raffle. If you work for, own, or know of a business who can donate an item, please help! A therapeutic riding program such as ours is never able to cover it’s expenses solely on lesson fees. Our therapy tools are our horses, and they require constant care, feed, and upkeep. Your donations will help keep us going!
I’ve had the good fortune to spend a week this winter at a therapeutic riding center in Fallbrook, California. The program, REINS, is 25 years old and going stronger than ever! I was inspired talking to the two women who have brought the program from a dream to where it is today. They serve 200 students and have 22 PATH-certified riding instructors!
Hope to see you at our OPEN HOUSE in May!
Newsletter #4 - December 19, 2016
Merry Christmas Friends! Christmas is right around the corner, and here at B.R.E.A.THE. we received the best Christmas gift of all a couple weeks ago, when IRS approval of our 501(c)(3) non-profit status arrived in the mail! This means we can start fund-raising efforts and all contributions will be tax-deductible.
We have also been in talks with some amazing folks here in Baraboo, about using part of their property for our program. This would allow us to jump ahead as far as facility development goes, as we would not have to be clearing land and building a barn and structures. With some minimum revisions to existing facilities, we would be able to start the program. We will be applying to the County soon for the required permits. Keep your fingers crossed that the process goes smoothly and receives approval!
We have been getting inquiries from many sources about the center, our programs, and volunteer opportunities. Up until now, we have all had other jobs that detracted us from the B.R.E.A.THE. mission (but helped pay the bills!) Now, as we head into 2017, Chris will be devoting 100% of her time to developing the programs, marketing, and funding that will support our launch later in the year (we are still shooting for late Spring or early Summer.)
And speaking of funding..., B.R.E.A.THE. will charge a nominal fee for its programs. This in no way will cover the actual costs. We will rely on the generosity of donors to assist with our operating expenses. Adaptive tack and equipment must be purchased, facilities upgraded, fences and corrals installed, all the while keeping the herd healthy and well fed! Donations of horses, new or used equipment, supplies and money are always needed and welcomed. Your contributions are tax deductible! With the 2016 tax year coming to an end, YOU can help bring equine-assisted therapies to those in need in Baraboo and the surrounding communities. Donations are accepted via Paypal through our website, or by cash or check made payable to B.R.E.A.THE.
We wish you all the very best in 2017! Happy Horsey Holidays!
Chris and Ed Singer
Newsletter #3 - October 9, 2016
This one will be short but we just wanted to let you know the latest!
Chris successfully completed the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship (PATH) Certification last weekend, and is now a PATH-Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor. This was a major hurdle we had to get over and now it is behind us!
Our Non-Profit Status has been accepted and recognized by the State of Wisconsin.
Our Non-Profit Status with the IRS is still pending. We hope to hear from them before the end of the year.
We have applied with PATH to become a member center. This membership is needed to get the best possible insurance rates.
We’re starting to plan for next year; volunteer recruitment and training, fund-raising, marketing, and our pilot program in Spring!
The word is getting out and a buzz is starting to build! YOU can help us keep the buzz going! Tell your friends, neighbors, family, and strangers about B.R.E.A.THE., the therapeutic riding center coming to Baraboo! Send them to our website: barabooriverequineassistedtherapies.org, where they can sign up to get the newsletter. Interested in spending time with the horses? Stay tuned for volunteer opportunities!
And, have a Happy Fall!
September 5, 2016
Well it is Labor Day weekend and as we sit and write this update we’re reflecting on what an awesome and busy summer we have had! The time really flew by and we are excited to report what has been happening with our program. As you know, we’ve been putting the building blocks together for the Baraboo River Equine-Assisted Therapies, Inc. (B.R.E.A.THE) program.
WE’RE CONNECTED! First of all; we now have a website and a Facebook site! Check out the website here: www.barabooriverequineassistedtherapies.org . We will continue to add to the website as we make progress. It is somewhat interactive – you can send us messages from the website and also make donations. And since we have an email address linked to the website, you may be receiving future updates from the new site email instead of the “BREATHE.WIS@yahoo.com” email.
To find us on Facebook, search for: @barabooriverequineassistedtherapies. Be sure to like/follow us so you can keep up with us and see what transpires weekly on the Facebook site!
CERTIFICATION: PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATION OF THERAPEUTIC HORSEMANSHIP (PATH): Chris’s internship as a PATH Therapeutic Riding Instructor has been taking her to Fond du Lac on a weekly basis. There, she works with her mentor at the Free Spirit Riders Therapeutic Riding Center. September will be her final month of training and she will take the PATH Certification exam the first weekend in October. Chris really enjoys the students she’s been working with in Fond du Lac and has gotten many great ideas for our program here in Baraboo. Once she’s certified, she will be able to give therapeutic riding lessons, and hopes to keep her teaching skills tuned up throughout the winter months before launching into our pilot program in Spring, 2017.
NON-PROFIT 501 (3)(C) STATUS: Thanks to help from the UW Madison’s Law and Entrepreneurship Program, the paperwork for filing our Non-Profit Application with the IRS was just completed and is in the mail! This was a much bigger job than we expected and we are so thankful to the UW Law student and the attorney-advisor who helped us get everything prepared. We are hoping and praying for a quick turn-around and approval. So many things hinge on our 501(3)(c) status getting approved; grant funding, donations, volunteer recruitment and training, fund-raising, and marketing. Not that we’re looking for more to do! But as winter closes in, we’re hoping to focus in on getting these building blocks in place!
THE HORSES: We added to our herd this summer! If you follow our Facebook page, you’ve seen pictures of Molly, our new miniature horse. Her previous owner could no longer keep her and so she joined our family in mid-July. Molly is six, and we don’t know too much about her past. It has taken her a little while to learn to trust us. She greets us at the gate now and loves going for walks down the road, greeting kids at the campground, and hanging out with her new herd. She’s also a great babysitter for the 4-month old colt she shares a pen with! And he is twice her size!
THE PEOPLE: In addition to the herd getting bigger, so has our “staff.” Not that we have official staff yet, but our friend and local trainer, Logan Sechler, has stepped into the ring and offered to assist getting this program launched. We are thrilled and excited to have Logan and her horses with us on this journey. She is a wealth of knowledge and an excellent horse trainer and riding instructor. So if your interests take you that direction, give Logan a call for non-therapeutic riding or horsemanship lessons. We don’t have a title for Logan yet, but someone recently suggested “Epic Horse Whispering Barn Managing Magician.” Let us know what you think!
THE FUTURE: As Fall closes in on us, we will begin to plan in earnest for marketing and fund-raising events. We will also be on the lookout for adaptive and standard tack and equipment, through donations or purchase. If you know someone who may benefit from and equine-assisted therapeutic horsemanship or riding experience, please put them in touch with us. We would love to explore whether our program will meet their needs.
Until next time, Happy Trails!
Update Newsletter #1
This is an update on our progress in establishing a therapeutic riding center in Baraboo. A therapeutic riding center will provide equine-assisted activities and therapies to individuals with special needs.
We are moving forward with the establishment of a 501 (c) (3) Wisconsin Non-Profit Corporation, under which the Center will operate. We will be known as Baraboo River Equine-Assisted Therapies, Inc. (B.R.E.A.THE). BREATHE has been accepted as a client with the University of Wisconsin Law and Entrepreneurship Clinic. Students and advisors from the clinic are guiding us through the formation of the Corporation and related legal needs in the coming weeks.
Once the corporation is official, we will begin planning fund-raising efforts, making presentations to community groups and businesses, and soliciting donations of horses, tack, and equipment. Meanwhile, there is still plenty going on behind-the-scenes that we want to let you know about.
The Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship, International (PATH) sets the standards for instructors and centers around the world. Chris has been studying her coursework and testing to become a PATH International Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor. She will be attending a four day instructor workshop in June. Then after completing her internship at Free Spirit Riders in Fond du Lac over the summer, she will take the final certification exam in the Fall. Chris will also be attending the PATH International Conference in November.
We have acquired a 3-acre parcel of land. It is big enough for an arena and some horses. We may have other options available. A lot will depend on zoning, permits, insurance and licenses. So, right now, we have not nailed down a facility, but we are open to exploring possibilities! Accessibility and adaptation will be key considerations.
There will be much to do in the coming months in order to start a pilot program in the Spring of 2017! Over the Fall and Winter our goals and objectives include fostering community support; developing program offerings; building an online presence; facility planning and adaptation; obtaining operating permits etc., and recruiting a volunteer force.
Want to help? Right now, one of the best and easiest things you can do is just spread the word! Tell your friends, neighbors, and associates about us (we are always willing to meet with anyone who wants more in-depth information about therapeutic riding). Forward this email to someone you know who might be interested; we would love to add them to this email list so they can receive future updates. And if YOU have ideas and skills you can lend, please let us know! We look forward to hearing from you!
Ed and Chris Singer
For more information on equine-assisted therapies, visit PATH INTERNATIONAL's website: www.pathintl.org
If you don't want to receive more updates, please let me know. And if you want to add someone to the distribution, please let us know that too!