Our daughter began riding with NKT 4 years ago. When she is on the horse she is happy for the entire 45 minute lesson.It is usually impossible to hold her attention longer than just a few minutes but there is something very special about those wonderful horses and volunteers at NKT :)
David's core strength has signiciantly improved since starting w/NKT 4yars ago. His behavior has also significantly inproved in that he used to whine almost the whole time, but now is laughing and enjoying himself. He's even looking at his horse with a smile and using signals to "walk on" and "whoa" since he can't use words. He has improved with following directions, but doesn't always "hit the mark" if he's asked to throw something into a bsket. He just likes to throw! It is a great organization mainly due to the wonderful volunteers. The competitions where the riders can show off their stuff and win ribbons and trophies is a real boost to their egos. GREAT ORGANIZATION!!!!
I have only been a volunteer in the office during last winter after retiring in the fall. I have really enjoyed learning how NKT helps so many families in the community. In June I did my first evening event. I enjoyed all the smiles on the faces of the riders and the looks of pride on the faces of their families watching them have a good time. NKT has an awesome set up, with a beautiful arena and so many friendly people who are there because they want to be. I am proud to be part of such a hard working group of caring people who want to make another persons life better. I have heard so many stories of the improvement our riders make and I am excited to see it first hand. I watched their faces and lit up and saw how happy it made the riders to have their family there watching them do something they could be proud of. I can't wait to see more!
New Kingdom Trail is fabulous! It gives our 28 yr. old son, who is severely mentally and physically challenged a chance to get out of his group home for a while, have fun riding and at the same time receive therapy. He just loves it! The great thing is that his dad and I are able to participate as volunteers. His dad is one of his sidewalkers and I meet and greet the riders as they come in. When our son first started riding he couldn't sit straight in the saddle and it was a chore to keep him up. Now in his 4th year, he's sitting with minimal assistance and smiles and laughs. He's starting to take more directions and follow through on them. What a blessing! It makes my heart filled with joy to see him having such a good time. NKT offers the opportunity for those who are challenged either physically, mentally or both an opportunity they wouldn't usually receive. They also get to make great friends and participate in rodeos, 4-H programs and other award giving programs all made possible by NKT's committment to this population. They are wonderful, caring and hard working people - volunteers who give of their time and effort to keep this wonderful program going. Thanks NKT for all you do!
My daughter was born 3 mos. premature-a triplet weighing about 2#. When we lived in rural Nebraska, she began therapeutic horseback riding in kindergarten. We moved to the Quad Cities in 2001 when she was in 2nd grade and after asking around about continuing her therapeutic horseback riding, we were put in touch with New Kingdom Trailriders. It has proven to be most beneficial in helping her with gross & fine motor skills, balance, and self-esteem & confidence. Since my daughter is a triplet, it is a sport she can call her own as her sisters do not need or participate in therapeutic horseback riding. Barb Clauson works tirelessly to keep this organization running. She gives selflesslly every possible minute of every day doing whatever necessary to ensure the program continues to be successful. We are most grateful to New Kingdom Trailriders as our daughter's life would not have been the same without it!
This is a wonderful program that benefits both the riders and their families. Our kids develop not only muscle tone, confidence and riding skills while having fun with the horses, we've also had a child who spoke his first word ever after joining the program and riding for only a few weeks! For the families, the program gives the childrens' caregivers a little break and it allows them to see their children participate in a "normal" activity. There is much smiling, waving and picutre taking going on as the riders go by the observation area! It take a tremendous amount of work and money to keep this program going, and every year I am grateful to be a part of helping others benefit mentally, physically and spiritually from being with the horses.