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Victory Reins Therapeutic Riding Center

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Health, Health Support

Mission: To provide therapeutic recreational equine activities for children and adults with special needs to experience the bond that is created between horse and rider. Empowering them to be victorious in all areas of life and reach their fullest potential.

Results: Since inception in Oct 2007, we have grown from 5 students to 40 plus steady students in additon to hosting special needs groups for day trips to the farm. We educate them with hands on learning experience with all the animals on the farm in a safe and supervised environment. The benefits impact them physically, cognitively and psychologically. These aspects of the session awaken their awareness, increase coordination and attention span, along with giving them a CAN DO attitude to succeed in life. Providing volunteer opportunities for school groups, individuals and community service workers to enable them to give back to their communities.

Target demographics: Handicapped, disabled or special needs peopleVolunteers who want to assist people with disabilities in the South Chicagoland area and surrounding suburbs.

Direct beneficiaries per year: 40 plus special needs students with various disibilities like CP, MS, Autism, ADHD, Learning disibilities,Speech delays etc.and their families, plus groups from Elim , Cornerstone, St. Colletta's, The Lions Club, various preschools, Girl scouts, Brownie groups and youth groups.

Geographic areas served: Northern Il.

Programs: Riding sessions that takes therapy out of the clinical setting and puts it in a safe and fun environment. Horse/animal care education and hands on experience.

Community Stories

159 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 4

My 9 year old son has been receiving therapeutic riding lessons for two months.

He has mild autism, and I figured it would be a good activity for him, since he loves animals, but does not always enjoy team sports.

I think his confidence has improved, as well as his motor skills, because now he is able to finally ride a bike without training wheels!

Sandy pushes him just enough to do reading or stretching exercises that he may not initially want to do, but he loves the horse riding so he does it. His reading has also improved in the past two months!

He loves that he has an activity he can do, not just being toted around to things his younger sister is in.

They also have cats, rabbits, dogs, and a goat, too, that the clients can interact with. All of the volunteers are dedicated and you can tell they want to be there, both for the clients and the animals.

Victory Reins has exceeded my expectations for a therapeutic riding center.


Rating: 5

One only needs to spend a short time at Victory Reins watching the joyful faces of the children as they have such fun "steeringl" their 1500# equine friends - and in the process building muscle strength, stamina and most of all confidence to see what a special program this is. Having had the privilege of helping these wonderful children and seeing the fun they have with the horses, Miss Sandy and the other volunteers has given me insight as to how valuable and needed this type of program is.


Rating: 5

I started working at Victory Reins because I needed the hours for school, but even after I racked up all the hours I needed, I kept working. Seeing the kids, disabled and able-bodied open up and communicate through the help of the horses and the wonderful people at VR makes my day every hour I work.

Keith P.


Rating: 5

I learned about Victory Reigns from a friend of mind with an autistic son. I decided to go with them on one Saturday. I was amazed. The riding lessons were more than that, they gave kids with all kinds of disability strength and courage. The children lit up. I've gone to Victory Reigns multiple times to volunteer and have invited others to bring their children. This is a wonderful and much needed program.


Client Served

Rating: 5

My daughter has been riding with Victory Reins for four years. She is 6 years old and thanks to Sandy and her amazing volunteers, loves riding every week. Every single client is treated like they are someone special and it shows when they light up while riding the horses. Being on the horses gives my daughter, who generally cannot walk without a walker so much freedom. You can tell that VR is truly a labor of love for Sandy and her staff. I would recommend it to anyone!!


Rating: 5

Wow, what a great place. To see a child who doesn't speak and has great difficulty communicating at all - command their horse to walk-on. To see the joy on their faces when they are in control. Mountains are being moved at Victory Reins.

Sylvia C.


Rating: 5

I have not had much experience with disabled kids but I crossed paths with Sandy from Victory Reins a couple of times and finally had my schedule free up so I could volunteer. I came for a Saturday morning and they needed sidewalkers. Everyone was very pleasant and helped me learn the right way to do a thigh hold to keep the kids in the saddle and then how to work with the kids and the other activities they do while they are riding the horse.