Each year when the horses are groomed, and our volunteers are ready, and the glitter is shining as bright as our riders’ smiles, we take a deep breath of gratitude for Special Olympics. It is indeed a special experience: for our riders, who get the chance to experience a real horse show; for our instructors who helped them succeed; for our horses, who leave the barn and bask in the glow of the audience.
And let’s not forget our riders’ caregivers and families! Glenn Speck was so excited to see his daughter Stephanie ride independently.
“This is truly special,” he shared. “She might not be able to do other types of activities, but she CAN do this.”
For other students, the benefits of Special Olympics – and riding – stretch beyond the arena. Tim McGinnis stayed to clean our horses’ stalls, even after his time in the show ring. His dedication to this task and his willingness to do it show how far he’s come at Agape! Just when we think we are serving our riders, they surprise us by serving us right back.
This year’s Special Olympics was a great success and we are looking forward to next year already.