Greetings from the barn. With so much unsettled these days, I am sharing the following video update on the state of Agape. I invite you to take a few minutes to hear not only what’s been happening these past weeks, but also to hear my heart for Agape, our dedicated staff, amazing riders, and broader supportive community.
In times of uncertainty such as this, we see the best of our community emerge. We are overwhelmed with gratitude for all of you who have asked, “How can I help?” in the midst of this COVID-19 crisis. We have taken time to pause and pivot our plans for the year, and we want to update you about how COVID-19 has impacted the way we can serve you, as well as let you know ways you can help. This is long, but please stay with us.
You might want to get your tissues ready for this one. You see, sometimes life can be pretty challenging for some of our riders. Home, or school, or both may be more stressful than safe. Life may be pretty uncertain from one day to the next. The challenges and the hurts of daily life show up at the barn and often presents itself in fear and timidity. But then they find a safe place in a horse… and that’s when they find their courage.
You know the term ‘Fun-Sized?’ That’s our little Welsh pony, River! At 12.2 hands tall, he is our smallest riding horse, but there is a whole lot of personality in that tiny palomino body. Just ask anyone that partners with him during group lessons at Agape South. Our lead group programming instructor, Linda Hazzard, loves including River in lessons. She says, “You know how much I love that little pony! He is a great teacher, and when you do it right, he joins right up and is your best bud.”
Our horses change lives every day. Sometimes, the changes are big–like Moe and Francisco–but sometimes they are smaller, more subtle. No matter how big or small though, our horses are helping people live happier, fuller lives. One such story is how Patch is helping Joseph Swim.