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Sally I.

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2 reviews

Review for Minis and Friends, Austin, TX, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

I am the Austin co-founder who runs the general operations and also a horse owner of 3 minis - MasterCard, Remington and SeanMonet. I am a volunteer as all of us are in Minis and Friends. I am proud to say in 2012, we have accomplished so many goals and reached so many new children and adults to bring hope, healing and laughter with the work of the little horses. We have handed out so many of our Mini Readers made possible by the Baxter Grant in 2011 - what a delight it is to have the children come out for a visit with the minis bringing their books! We have added 10 new facilities since January and 5 new support events. We have also have had 2 Mini Boot Camps - one in March and the other in May - and have trained upcoming non-profits in Alaska (Knee High Mini Tours), Canada (Boo's Hooves), Kentucky (HeavenSent Half-Pints) and Massachusetts (Minis and Friends Massachusetts) to bring Equine Guided Interactions (EGI) to their soon-to-be non-profits. Minis and Friends is rich in volunteers and our family of friends in the facilities and support events we work with. I look forward to many more new and old visits for the remainder of 2012.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

every way imaginable - to include my own health related issues in 2011 which put me on the side that those we visit are on! What a difference and a sense of calm it gave me!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Find grant funding to provide a small salary to the Program Director so that the organization could function full time and not just on weekends and some holidays.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?


How much of an impact do you think this organization has?


Will you tell others about this organization?


When was your last experience with this nonprofit?


How did you learn about this organization?

I was one of 3 co-founders who created it in 2007.

What is this organization's top short-term priority?

Find it a donation of land in south Austin with a small covered arena and an office so that the non-profit could work more than just weekends by facilities coming to them and so there would be no cancellations - currently rain or extreme heat can cancel a visit.

What is its top priority in the long run?

To have 2 Minis and Friends facilities set up for folks to come to us - rain or shine. A facility in south/southwest Austin and one in Round Rock/Pflugerville/Northwest Austin area.

Role:  Board Member & Co-founder, trainer, board member, mini-handler, table representative, leader.

Review for Minis and Friends, Austin, TX, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

Minis and Friends was created in 2007 to extend the growing need of miniature horse "Equine Guided Interactions (EGI) " programs (therapy) in the greater Austin Metro area. We started the organization with 9 friends and miniature owners and worked primarily on weekends free of charge to most facilities and support events. We developed our program of EGI and teach it to others in other states and cities in our annual Mini Boot Camp, a hands-on 4-day extensive workshop in Austin, TX.

Our non-profit model is unique as the minis are not owned by the non-profit - but instead by mini owners or volunteers who become mini owners to bring indescribable smiles to all we meet. We train them and their little horses/donkeys to work with us in the communities.

We began the organization in early 2007 with 6 minis and 4 owners and today we have 17 minis and 8 owners. We reach deeper into other counties now to include Bastrop, Cedar Park, Dripping Springs, Round Rock and other towns along the way.

To this day, most visits are free and we use our form of creative fundraising to raise the much needed dollars for our Equine General Liability Insurance for every visit and event for all minis working and to keep us on the road!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have seen wonderous moments since becoming a very active owner with my husband Gil who is our lead mini teacher while out in the community. We have reached children in shelters who never smiled or laughed- give barrels of laughter, we have seen At-Risk Youth smile and participate in our visits when before they just sat and stared, we have seen memory disorders seniors reach far into their long term memory talk and remember their families names when they have talked or stood for over 2 years, and more

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Find sponsors and donors so we could purchase or donation of land of 1-2 acres for an indoor arena with 1 office, 1 training class and stalls for minis and have a better capability for our clients to come to us -regardless of the weather in South Austin. We have two main locations - South Austin and NW Austin. This would enable us to set up our Agility Course and leave it set-up for confidence and self-esteem building in the many youth we visit on weekends.

Role:  Board Member & I am one of 3 co-founders who started up Minis and Friends, created the website and social media sites (Facebook and Twitter, and Wordpress), I run the organization to the extent of business operations and teach at Mini Boot Camp.