Southern Tier Alternative Therapies has been such a blessing for many individuals with an assortment of disabilities in our rural Upstate NY area. Being a teacher of children with autism, I learned of STAT as many of my students regularly attend riding lessons at the nearby Fargnoli Farms. Looking for a place to volunteer and intrigued as to why so many people flock there I contacted Linda. Immediately I feel in love. The other volunteers are so welcoming and are from all walks of life, the horses are simply amazing, and of course the kids are witty and wonderful. This meaningful volunteer opportunity has allowed me to be part of a wonderful team and has helped to bridge a gap between school and therapy. The Therapeutic Riding sessions focus on meeting a variety of students’ needs including, but not limited to, additional academic practice (recognizing letters, colors, and sight words, practicing propositions, knowing right vs. left, etc), balance and motor planning, increased communication (via more eye contact, waving hello, verbally greeting others, or using the iPad or Dynavox to facilitate conversation via STRIDES), addressing sensory needs and eliminating basic fears or anxieties. Progress is forward, noticeable, and ongoing. I am incredibly grateful to STAT for paving the way for such positive opportunities. I wish you continued growth and success in all the years to come!
Trinity Presbyterian Church has recently created a mission team in the last few years called the Lignt Mission Team. Volunteering through mission work and our High School Sunday School class we have grown to know STAT in the past few years. A great organization providing therapy through horses and smiles! We cannot wait to come back again!
My twin girls have cerebral palsy and been with STAT for over a year now. They absolutely love the experience they have there. They are excited to ride and visit the horses, and "play" with all the great people who are part of their therapy. They both have gained a lot of core strength and confidence. STAT is full of truly caring individuals, my wife and I could not be happier.
I'm a substitute volunteer, mostly filling in during the summer when I'm off work from teaching. As a teacher, I observe how much growth the children have through this program and I am amazed! As a horse lover, I am happy to see the horses having a meaningful impact on so many riders, their families and the people who work/volunteer in the program. I also donate to the program when I am able - a very worthwhile cause!! I spread the word about the wonders of STAT to everyone I know.
STAT provides wonderful opportunities for children with a range of disabilities to grow and heal while enjoying the connection and movement of horses. I have volunteered at Fargnoli Farms for 3 years and the changes and growth I have seen in our children is astounding. We have had children come who were non-verbal and are now speaking in sentences. Some who come timid of the horses and learn quickly they are safe and riding and working with horses is fun. How about one little one who had never had a conversation with Dad but after a couple of rides told him about her visit to the farm. Little ones who have difficulty sitting up but with the loving guidance of volunteers and the movement of patient horses can hold themselves upright for some of their ride. Teens who comment how much they miss their time at the farm when they can't be there. As a volunteer I am blessed to involved with such a loving, caring group of people making a difference in our lives, the children and their families. This is an amazing nonprofit with amazing results.
STAT HAS BEEN A VITAL SUPPORT FOR PROGRAMS IN OUR LOCAL COMMUNITY. MANY SPEVIAL NEEDS INDIVIDUALS WOULD NOT BEABLE TO EXPERIENCE THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF EQUINE WITHOUT THIS TERRIFTIC GROUP OF PEOPLE . WE HAVE BEEN INVOLVED WITH THEM FROM THE BEGTINNING AND HOPE TO CONTINUE OUR RELATIONSHIP FOR MANY YEARS TO COME
over the past 5 years STAT has helped many individuals experience the wonderful world of equine. without the dedication of the STAT board and community members this program would not be available to many special needs families in our community. Stat offers scholarships for individuals to participate in adaptive riding and hippotherapy as well as other programs. Stat serves many different diagnosis and offers many diverse programs to individuals. they are affiliated with other community organization that help promote the wonderful opportunities here in Broome and surrounding counties. without stat there would be no other non for profit to offer this terrific entity to our special needs community. Thanks STAT
I started to volunteer with the STAT Program at Fargnoli Farms in February 2012. I saw a story in a local weekly newspaper, The Tioga Courier, telling about the program and Linda Fargnoli. Linda opens her farm up to this program twice a week. The story talked about the need for volunteers for the STAT Program and what the volunteers need to do, keeping the children safe with no experience needed regarding horses. I had started taking lessons to learn to ride horses a year or so before, as in my 50's decided it was something I wanted to do. I love horses. I happen to love children. Seemed like a good mix to me. I started working with a pony names Snowy and a little boy named Evan. We had a team of 3; one to lead the pony, two people to sidewalk and make sure that little boy was safe. We also were to interact with our rider. In the beginning, Evan was reserved but seemed to be happy to be there. Dougie and Mrs. H. were the sidewalkers and Evan was very comfortable with Mrs. H. as he knew her from school. After a bit, we all became more comfortable with each other. We would be silly, sing, play different games that Linda would set up such as ring toss from the pony's back, find little plastic animals placed around outside, or throw rocks in the creek.
Mrs. H. left us but helped with finding another volunteer, Bernadette. We also started using a bigger horse. Evan seemed to get a little bored with the pony and it was felt that he may need more movement. Evan's sense of balance improved greatly. He is very happy to come every week. He interacts and is happy to see his team and his horse, Floozie. Evan loves the cats, chickens and ducks on the farm. He is particularly fond on the cats. Evan has learned to rein around barrels at a walk, turn Floozie in a circle and recently even rode at a trot. The biggest step for me in working with Evan is that he will walk with me and hold my hand or he has walked arm and arm with me. He now will air blow Floozie a kiss at the end of his ride.
I have also recruited a family friend, Dave, to help with sidewalking and recently added my husband, Ronald to our fun Saturday mornings as a volunteer, too. Linda Fargnoli will thank me for coming and it is like THANK YOU. I get so much out of this program, maybe more than Evan. Love everyone there and Linda has a big heart and caring for this program.
My son Evan was diagnosed with Autism at the age of 5 yrs old. He is considered "high functioning". We had heard great things about "STAT" from other parents of Evan's class mates at school.
What a blessing! The changes in Evan were very suttle but quite evident as time as progressed! I had no clue what this would do, but I was willing to try anything. I have seen wonderful changes in Evan. I have also observed changes in the other children that ride when Evan ride and it is just remarkable!
STAT is just funominal for these kids and without this program I have no idea where they would be. I am certain that Evan would not be where he is today with out the help of STAT!
From one very greatful mother!
I have been volunteering here for over a year now and it has been one of the best experiences of my life. Watching the kids improve so much has been a real treat. They do so many good things here and it really is amazing. Anyone can benefit from this, not just the children. The parents and the volunteers alike are taught things as well. It really is an awesome program.
I was lucky enough to have Cat Markosky visit my workplace during a United Way Meeting. My son has apraxia of speech and I had heard from a few different people that riding a horse would be great therapy. I had the chance to speak with Cat after the meeting. She was so positive and told me to contact her and give it a try. That was 3years ago. My son looks forward to going to Stable Movements every week. He loves the horses, he has gained great self confidence and he looks forward every week to riding.We have met many wonderful people who volunteer and other families helping their children like us. What a great program.
My son starting riding when he was 3 years old. He couldn't run without falling, couldn't throw a ball, couldn't climb stairs; my list could go on. He had such a hard time trying to do the things that all kids do. When he rode the horse the results were amazing. Over time it was wonderful to see the difference in him. He could run without falling, climb the stairs use the equipment on the playground. We finally got to take down the baby gates in the house. He was also unable to communicate. His language is emerging. He's signing and more verbal on the horse. It's a therapy I'm very passionate about and am lucky he gets the opportunity to ride.
I cannot begin to explain how this wonderful organization, STAT, (southern tier Alternative therapies) has helped our daughter. Jenna is 13 and has aspergers, ocd, sensory issues, and just is not accepted anywhere. Horses, and animals are her mainstay to happiness. STAT has enabled us to be able to Have Horse therapy and watch our daughter smile, to be accepted by the horses. Her whole body changes when she is with the horses, she becomes confident, stands stronger, sits straighter. Without STAT I dont' think she'd be who she is today. I thank goodness everyday for STAT and their help.
STAT has made it possible for our son Thomas, with Prader-Willi Syndrome to keep on horseback - which he needs desperately due to excessive low tone and 83degree scoliosis - after he aged out of eligibility! :) We are SOOOOO grateful for the assistance - there's no way we would be able to afford it, yet it is tremendously beneficial for our boy. Not only does it help him hugely physically - the emotional benefits are measurable! He's soooo proud of himself - the horseman that he is, and it even increases and improves his speech!!! THANK YOU AND GOD BLESS STAT!!!!
Catt Maczko, Mom to Thomas Jersey Maczko, dob 4/28/05, PWS by upd.
STAT is a young growing organization that offers scholarships to children and young people who have special needs throughout a 7 County area in the Southern Tier of New York State. Among their board of directors is the President and Founder who is a professional grant writer with a proven record of obtaining funding from businesses, foundations, as well as through fundraising efforts. STAT is an organization operated and staffed by 100% volunteers. Additional programs are coming for art, music, and dance movement/yoga therapies. for more information go to their website www.statinc.org