Fayette County Board of DD’s parent and child support group, known as S.A.F.E., took a field trip to Spirit Horse of Ohio for a tour on March 27. Spirit Horse of Ohio is a therapeutic riding stable located in Jamestown, about 30 minutes from Washington Court House.
S.A.F.E. members are always open to new therapy opportunities and ways of supporting their kids and others in the community with disabilities. The owner of Spirit Horse, Channin Ford, came to the S.A.F.E. group on March 13 and really impressed the parents with her level of knowledge of children with disabilities.
Channin is a former early intervention specialist who has worked with children with disabilities for years. She also is a parent of a daughter with autism. Channin has been involved with showing horses and caring for them her entire life, so she decided to join these two passions together to form a therapeutic riding experience for children with special needs.
The S.A.F.E. group decided a tour of the facility may be a good idea to see if it was something that their children would participate in. The tour revealed that Spirit Horse offers more than just fun with horses. It is a detailed therapeutic experience that offers families a wide range of services.
Channin has also brought on-staff an occupational therapy student who provides a lot of input and support with each child served. They review doctors’ recommendations, the child’s IEP and of course the parent’s input while they develop a specific riding program for that child.
Cheryl Binegar, facilitator of S.A.F.E., said, “I have not seen this level of passion in a program in awhile. I was very excited for the families of Fayette County when we discovered this amazing opportunity.”
The parents clearly felt the same way, and after the tour, nine children from Fayette County immediately signed up to participate in the program. All the children are varying ages, genders and levels of disabilities.
For more information about any of the programs and services provided by Fayette County Board of Developmental Disabilities, please call 740-335-7453 or visit www.fayettedd.com.