“For somehow, not only at Christmas, but all the long year through, the joy that you give to others, is the joy that comes back to you.”
~ John Greenleaf Whittier
As you consider how you and your family might be able to give this year, there is a way you can give that will have a long and lasting impact at Agape. Our horses make all the difference here. They teach our riders about life – how to work together, how to be respectful, how to share, how to trust, how to communicate, how to have boundaries, how to lead, how to be strong, how to have courage, and the list of lessons goes on and on. There are about 33 horses that served nearly 2,000 participants this year and provided over 7,000 lessons. That is a deep and wide reach of impact across central Indy. It goes without saying that without our horses, Agape would not exist.
There are a few ways you can give towards the care of our horses who care for our riders in return. When you give to supporting our horses, you also give to making a difference in the lives of our riders, families, partners, and volunteers. It is a gift that will bring you immeasurable joy and also joy to others that lasts all year long.
- Adopt-A-Horse – it costs approximately $6,000 each year to care for each horse at Agape. Choosing to sponsor an Agape horse for 6 months ($1,500) or 1 year ($3,000) helps provide much needed support for that horse including veterinary needs, farrier work, hay, grain, and supplements. We have 9 horses that are available to be adopted by the end of this year. Our Adopt-a-horse page provides more information for you about this giving opportunity.
- Buckets and Bales – maybe you would rather help support all of our horses and the care for them. Making a donation towards buckets of grain and bales of hay helps our entire herd and in turn serves all of our riders.
You can help make a deep and far-reaching impact in our community that will last all year long through supporting the care of our horses.
Domino is a gentle giant Percheron that has been serving riders at Agape since 2015. His size commands a room and his personality captures everyone in the barn.
Before coming to Agape he was a beloved carriage horse downtown. These days Domino is a go to horse for anyone that needs the size and strength of a draft horse. Domino faithfully carries between 6 and 10 riders a week that only a draft horse can comfortably carry, and each rider is so thankful for him.
This plucky little pony is quite the character! He likes serving our youngest riders best, and most especially those working on independent riding skills. He is a good teacher too! He will let you know when you need to do better, and reward you when you’ve done well. It’s hard to find a teacher better than the horse himself, and Dusty knows it! This smart little guy has been serving in riding lessons long before coming to Agape and he’s carrying on his tradition of teaching here as well.
This is what one parent says about Dusty’s impact on her daughter:
“She first started to ride and was slouched and bouncy. She had very pour posture and was weak in strength. Over the months that she has been riding she is now sitting nice and tall. She has grown in strength and confidence. Krosley is shy and timid in nature. Her horse is making her feel more Brave. She is trying more with him. Dusty is making her feel like she CAN do things instead of she Can’t. He has really helped her build confidence in herself and her abilities. She can be a leader and does not have to be a follower and she is starting to have that confidence thanks to Dusty. Thank you Dusty for being there for Krosley to make her feel more secure in her everyday world and let her know that she CAN do things and is STRONG! She builds more strength everyday!!” ~ Parent
Buddy is a fun and different kind of ride. He is a Tennessee Walking Horse, and therefore has a smooth, gliding gait that is very different from the regular trot of our other horses. This makes Buddy a great choice for anyone who needs a gentle, floating ride. He is kind and loves the company of people, and especially loves going out on the trails. His love for the trails makes him a huge asset during summer camps and classes that trade arena time for a walk in the woods.
This sharp, sporty little guy has a lot to offer. He always wants to please, and will do anything you ask. Need just one tiny little step to make that mount go perfectly smooth? Gunner will gladly give it to you. Ready to grow your riding skills and go unclipped? Gunner will listen intently and try anything for you. He is a go to horse for teaching day-to-day skills such as patience, empathy, listening, and being present.
Daisy is a beautiful, big girl that first served with us last year at the Bradford Woods summer camp and did such an excellent job that we brought her back this year. When some grant money became available to purchase a few horses, we decided we liked her so much that we just had to keep her. She is always kind, with a gentle look in her eye that riders love, and is ever so easy to get along with. Daisy is a wonderful horse for independent riders to gain some confidence in more advanced skills, like walking and trotting without assistance from a horse handler.
Duke is known as Duke the Wonder Horse, and it is certainly true. This little guy may be small, but he has a big job serving our highest needs riders. And Duke never falters in his work–rain or shine, mud or dust, full support or independent, Duke is always steady and ready to serve. And if you talk real sweet to him, he may even smile for you!
Ginger was standing in a field one day and the next was on a trailer headed to Agape. She may have arrived in a whirl, but she has won our hearts with a steady pace and a gentle spirit that no one can resist. Her head and ears are literally the size of most people’s head and torso, but she will lower them down without fail for an ear scratch or a quiet moment standing with the people around her. Ginger has truly embraced our mission and lends us her strength and love on a daily basis, whether it is waiting patiently on a rider frozen with fear, or joining up with a school group to weave through obstacles with no ropes attached. She loves people, and we love her.
Jasper is a stout Haflinger that can do it all. He soldiers through summer camp without a complaint, he dresses up for Mane Event and looks fancy doing his classes, he walks down the trail as steady as can be, and carries riders in classes who span the spectrum of needs–from full support with adaptive equipment, to independent riders having fun playing games. Jasper is a versatile horse with a big heart in a small package.
Beau has been a therapy horse for several years now. He started his career with Edelweiss and made the transition to Agape East as smooth as silk. There is no horse at Agape East that does a better job of carrying our riders that need full support. He is steady, even-paced, patient, and knows that he is very good at his job. It’s not very often that you find a horse that takes such pride in his work, but Beau sure knows that he is an important member of the team doing a big service to those who ride him.
If you are interested in making a difference through sponsoring an Agape horse this year, Amanda Bocik or any one on our team can assist you.