Target: Ranch owner Sharon Smith
Goal: To thank private ranch owner for donating her land and giving full use of her equine facility to a pediatric therapy center
Hippotherapy is a treatment using the normal gait of a horse to promote balance because it is similar to a human’s walking pattern. Though it is quite successful in improving and treating an extensive range of physical disabilities, costs to run and maintain a facility providing this therapy are quite expensive. Thank Sharon Smith, who donated her large private ranch and 27 horses to be used for pediatric therapy services.
Cassandra Sanders Holly had a pediatric practice in Orange County but closed her practice and left for her hometown in Norco after finishing her doctorate. Completing her hippotherapy training in 2008, she wanted to incorporate this type of equine therapy but costs were extremely high. With several thousands of dollars in staffing and facility costs alone, it’s not offered in many places. A large location for the horses and training is needed, as well as a horse handler, a trained physical therapist and a sidewalker to assist the therapist.
In 2008, Cassandra Sanders Holly met Sharon Smith and the rest is history. Sharon offered her private ranch and facilities (including 27 horses) for free. Leaps and Bounds was born, a center providing physical and occupational therapy, hippotherapy and therapeutic riding. Kids with disabilities such as autism, cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, and traumatic brain injuries can experience much improvement through these therapies. Hippotherapy has been shown to improve muscle tone, balance, posture, coordination, motor development as well as emotional well-being, according to the American Hippotherapy Association. Scholarships are offered for families that need financial help and donations also help keep costs low.
Because of Sharon Smith’s generosity, Leaps and Bounds’ center is able to offer a wide range of pediatric therapies to children all over California’s Inland Empire and Orange County. Sign the petition below and thank Sharon Smith for her generosity and support in helping kids and their families with such great needs.
Dear Ms. Sharon Smith,
Thank you so much for your generous donation of your private land, facilities and horses to benefit children with a range of disabilities. The Leaps and Bounds center exists because of your kindness and help; you are touching a countless number of lives.
Hippotherapy and other equine therapy has proven to be quite beneficial and helpful in treating a range of disabilities. It helps children who have difficulty sitting, standing, walking, feeding and other basic everyday motor skills.
Your gift has helped make possible the only practice in Southern California to offer both clinic-based therapy and hippotherapy services. Thank you for being an “angel investor” and for making such a difference in these childrens’ lives and their families.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Cassandra Sanders Holly via Leaps and Bounds Pediatric Therapy website