Emily Fenter, Reporter

HorseAbility is one of the few programs that help people with physical and emotional disabilities ride horses. All of their efforts and work have benefited the lives of so many people young and old. HorseAbility helps these clients develop skills they are lacking in and they all have a great time. Since 1993 HorseAbility, located at Thomas School of Horsemanship in Melville, NY, has helped many new riders of all ages.

There are many programs children and adults can benefit from at HorseAbility. From private lessons to group lessons and hippotherapy to the Special Olympics everyone always has a great time. Kids can increase their balance in hippotherapy or take speech with others. Anyone with a physical, emotional, social or other disability can come and have a great time.

This non-profit organization does all they can for there more than 300 clients. HorseAbility has many volunteers that are always helpful to everyone and always more than happy to help. The students can go on trial rides or ride around the ring but they always enjoy their time up on the horse. If you want to be a volunteer and have no horse experience there is still a place for you to help; besides HorseAbility provides year round lessons, along with a summer camp for a week. You can help take care of the horses, help during the lessons, or just help with kids but there is always room for more volunteers to help. All you need to do is set up a volunteer orientation and you will be on your way from there.

HorseAbility also has a horseshow every year that gives the kids a chance to show their stuff. They get a certificate and a medal so everyone gets something. In addition to this, some clients go to the Hampton Classics every year, they do an unbelievable job and gives them self a sense of accomplishment.

HorseAbility is always looking for more people to help and ways to get better. Along with all the volunteers, one of the hardest working parts to this organization is the horses. They are all so wonderful and friendly. They all have to go through a test to make sure they are safe, but there are never any doubts about these horses. Everyone finds one they like and one they fit on so whether you need a big horse, like there draft horse Bruno or a small pony like there bay Bear, there is always someone for you. These horses are also used in Thomas School of Horsemanship and have many lovers. They always are working but defiantly get time off. These horses love going on the trials or just in the ring, but getting out of there stalls makes there day.

HorseAbility is such a beneficial program to so many clients and gives children with disabilities a chance to feel good about them self and go through therapy in a fun way instead of a plain boring room. I think it is amazing that not everyone does this because it is not just fun for the riders but the volunteers as well.