Join us at the Fun Show & Family Day on Saturday, April 27!

Rainbow Riding will be hosting our annual Fun Show & Family Day on Saturday, April 27, 2019 from 10 am to 2 pm.  It will be an incredibly fun day for families from across our larger community.  In addition to a petting zoo, crafts and activities, and a raffle, you encourage you to support and be a part of this very special and important day for our riders. It is so meaningful to have a crowd cheering our athletes on as they showcase their skills. 

New this year, to promote our Fun Show & Family Day, we are also hosting an Online Horse Race on Facebook! Check out this video from Finny to learn more about how it all works.

Over the next two weeks, you’ll be hearing from each of our horses on Facebook. (If you haven’t already, like our Facebook Page so you can stay up-to-date!) Please help the horses WIN the race by liking and sharing their videos, and donating! You can vote for as many horses and as many times as you like! We will announce the winners with the most likes and donations at the Fun Show & Family Day.

Thank you for being part of the Rainbow family.  We hope to see you on April 27th and, as always, thank you for your continued support.

VOLUNTEER OF THE MONTH — DECEMBER 2018

Rainbow Volunteer of the Month for May is Julie Baldwin.

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Julie has been a resident of Northern Virginia area for 20 years. She learned about Rainbow while working in a local high school, and came out to train in August of 2017.

In spite of her busy schedule at home, Julie volunteers for multiple lessons each week as a sidewalker. Sidewalkers have the important job of walking alongside the rider, providing support if needed. She has always enjoyed working with children, but being around horses is a new experience for Julie. She has really enjoyed learning about them, and has even taken up riding lessons at a local lesson barn.

Thank you, Julie, for your continued support at Rainbow. We are glad you are enjoying your volunteer experience while making it possible for others to enjoy and benefit from therapeutic riding!

Remember Rainbow in Your Year End Giving

Dear Friend of Rainbow,

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     Will you make a Holiday donation so Rainbow can continue serving local disabled children, at-risk youth, and wounded soldiers? 

     To keep the doors open, I count on kind and generous friends like you — friends who understand the magic that occurs when a cognitively disabled, autistic, or otherwise impaired child bonds with a horse… 

     … or, when a soldier suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or traumatic brain injury (TBI) spends time with a gentle animal that offers unconditional love…

     … or, when a young soldier missing his right arm and lower leg received a boost to his confidence as he straddled a horse (imagine that for a second)…

     Every week, I see little miracles — and I wish you could too!

     Like the young patient who made the transition from life in an institution to independent living — partly thanks to the confidence he gained from riding…

     And, that moment when an autistic child realized his horse was “listening” to him…

     With YOUR help we have been able to reach PREMIER ACCREDITED status which few therapeutic riding centers have accomplished. It demonstrates that Rainbow delivers equine-assisted therapy on the highest standard! We were able to expand the Rainbow programs to reach many more deserving individuals who rely on the alternative therapy programs. Thank you for that! 

     We now need your help again to support the growing need. With our programs expanding into behavioral challenges and help for at-risk youth we need the donations from generous individuals like you. Imagine that with our work we can prevent one child from being bullied, one more child being able to graduate from school, one veteran choosing a way out of depression rather than self-harm. We don’t only touch lives; we change lives – One Hoof Beat at a Time!

     Here’s an amazing fact: We’ve been able to enroll about 29 more children and young adults to the program over the last 12 months and, today, we serve about 90 children each week!  And, in the same period, about 28 service members from Walter Reed have participated in our program!

     There is no way we could pass along the true cost of the service we provide to the families and soldiers we serve; they simply could not afford it.  So, both our growth and the cost of maintaining the program are only possible because friends like you donate the funds needed to keep our doors open and help enrich the lives of these children and soldiers through their bond with the horses and they therapeutic work they do with them. 

     Today, we are running in the black — but, as we end one year and enter the new one, I’m asking for your continued support.

     Almost every day, your gift will produce small triumphs and help reach tremendous goals.  

     To continue supplying these services I need your help!

     This is our most important fundraising appeal of the year, and your gift goes right to the bottom line.  Every penny you donate goes directly towards feeding and housing our wonderful, loving horses and other essential expenses.

     Fact is, we are 100% dependent on donations to make ends meet — a humbling and sometimes precarious existence that requires me to ask you for help as we close the year…

     I hope I can count on you to make a special year-end holiday gift of $25, $50, $35 or even more.

     Regardless, I want to wish you and your loved ones a wonderful holiday season and the warmest thanks for your past support!

Sincerely,

Inga Janke, Executive Director   

P.S. Remember, most of the children and soldiers we help would not be able to benefit from this program if we passed along the full cost to them.   You can see how a gift of $25 or $30 or even $100 can really help — and why we need continued support in order to keep our doors open.

Your gift will help provide the services that benefit so many local children — and the wounded veterans who find this program so helpful in their recovery.  I’m counting on your help!

 

VOLUNTEER OF THE MONTH — SEPTEMBER 2018

Rainbow Volunteer of the Month for May is Valerie Yeakle.

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Valerie came to Rainbow to volunteer in May of this year.   A social worker in the ER at Inova Fairfax Hospital, Valerie received her Master's in Social Work from George Mason University in 2016.  She lived in California for a couple years. While there, she volunteered with J.F Shea Therapeutic Riding Center in San Juan Capistrano.  Valerie fell in love with therapeutic riding, and is interested in becoming a PATH instructor someday. She started riding at Shenandoah River Farm in Strasburg, Virginia when she was 12,  and worked at the stables, helped to train horses, and helped manage the barn for about seven years. Valerie also owned her own horse in high school; a Percheron named " Petite V" (pictured here).

Valerie says:  “What I like best as a volunteer is seeing the joy that riding brings the students at Rainbow.   It makes it all worthwhile. Volunteering at Rainbow has easily become my favorite part of the week and I'm so grateful that I am able to be a part of the team here.”

We are grateful too, for your help, Valerie!  Thank you for joining our volunteer family here at Rainbow Therapeutic Riding!

VOLUNTEER OF THE MONTH — AUGUST 2018

Rainbow Volunteer of the Month for May is Anna Sauls.

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Anna came to Rainbow as soon as she was old enough to volunteer at the Center.  After completing volunteer training, she began right away helping with lessons as a sidewalker.  She also has helped with barn chores, summer camps and with our Fall Open House and outdoor concert.  

Currently a senior at Battlefield High School, Anna plans to study clinical neuroscience while continuing to volunteer after graduation.

Anna is  a regular sidewalker on our busy Wednesday afternoon team.   Students and instructors alike appreciate Anna’s reliability and her  quiet confidence. At home, Anna enjoys hiking, cooking and playing video games.

Thank you, Anna for your help over the past few years! We’re so glad you’re a part of our Rainbow Volunteer Family!