For the last several years, The Pace Foundation along with members of the Pace Team have been enriched by our experiences in support of Special Equestrians of Birmingham.
Special Equestrians has a mission to enrich the lives of people with physical, cognitive, or emotional challenges through a relationship with a horse. In accomplishing their mission, the goal is to increase the independence and quality of life for the riders. They do this through a variety of methods. At Special Equestrians, the instructors, therapists, and volunteers work together to provide a fun and stimulating environment. The horses, facilities, and equipment are carefully selected to provide a safe environment and to accommodate a wide range of disabilities.
Each year, Special Equestrians serves over 100 riders with the help of sixteen horses and over 250 volunteers. The program has trained and certified over twenty instructors through PATH International (Professional Association of the Therapeutic Horsemanship) and has retained Premier Accredited status with the association for fourteen years. We are proud to support an organization that provides a rewarding and unique therapeutic experience for its riders.
It costs Special Equestrians $5,000 annually to take care of each horse at their facility. Additionally, it costs $3,000 to provide the program to each rider, a cost which increased in the COVID environment due to new regulations. A financial contribution to Special Equestrians provides general support for their programs and operations. In addition to the annual financial contribution The Pace Foundation makes to Special Equestrians, we are excited to announce that this year, The Pace Foundation will also be sponsoring a horse named Max.
Max, is one of the newer horses to Special Equestrians, having arrived in Spring 2019. Although new, he is quickly becoming one of the most endearing and reliable! After a long career as a child's hunter - jumper horse, Max's family knew he would be perfect for therapeutic riding. This twenty-year-old quarter horse LOVES people and is happy to enjoy scratches and treats for as long as he can get them. With the Special Equestrian riders, he is quiet and willing. Max has become a popular horse for independent riders who are looking to learn more advanced skills. While he is sweet and obedient, Max is also very quirky. He loves to nicker when riders are mounting and dismounting. Perhaps, he gets excited or knows he will get a treat for a job well done!
Each year The Pace Foundation also supports Special Equestrians as a sponsor of their Boots and Black-Tie Gala that is held in the Spring. In the fall, the foundation participates in the Celebrity Golf Tournament. Many members of the Pace Team also enjoy spending time at the Special Equestrian facility volunteering for projects around the grounds and providing general support for classes.
As the facility reopens safely during COVID-19, The Pace Foundation and the Pace Team are looking forward to opportunities to volunteer in 2021! We are happy to support an organization that offers programs that make an impact on the lives of so many.