“It was such a humbling experience for us to be chosen,” stated Ken Giske, Walk On’s program director.

The program has serves 28 riders per week (children and adults with any physical, developmental, social and emotional disabilities) per week, all through trained volunteers who assist. Based on 2019’s schedule, there were over 1000 hours with the horses.

Riders aged four through adults from St. Croix, Dunn and Polk counties receive

numerous benefits through participation: development of core physical muscle

strength; balance and coordination; work on the educational process of cognitive development; speech; socialization; through the work with PTSD, working on personal and family issues: and build confidence when seeing their abilities grow.

The program was recently reaccredited by and follows the guidelines and standards of PATH International (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship) which governs the industry and is recognized as a Premier Therapeutic Riding Program.

Walk On depends on a variety of ways to fulfill and meet the annual budget – primarily through its fundraisers, rider registration fees and generous donations such as the award from the Power of 100 Women’s group.

Funds will be utilized in several ways: feed and caring of the horses

(vet and farrier bills, hay, grain), maintenance of the facilities, riding and grooming equipment and subsidizing program fees for local school districts.

Walk On also supports Horses for Heroes programming which serves vets, law enforcement and emergency personnel, and assists payment for families of low income or no means of payment. “We don’t want to turn kids away that can benefit from our program because of funding,” commented Giske.

To learn more about Walk On and how it serves our local communities, visit: https://www.walkontherapeutichorsemanship.org/.

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