R.O.C.K., Ride On Center for Kids—a Georgetown, Texas-based nonprofit and facility providing equine-assisted activities and therapy to those with cognitive and physical challenges—recently hosted its annual Barn Dance. The fundraiser, which paid tribute to the center’s clients and volunteers, brought in more than $350,000 in cash for the non-profit.
Money from the event will go toward offering scholarships to persons interested in participating in the program but are unable to do so due to financial constraints, covering expenses not included in tuition, and purchasing equipment to improve the riding arena. In addition, a portion of the proceeds will be used to acquire new horses and train them.
Although 26 horses, including American Quarter Horses and Thoroughbreds, live and work at R.O.C.K., many are approaching their prime. To continue its work and meeting the needs of its roughly 200 clients, R.O.C.K. is working on bringing in more horses which meet the center’s health, training and temperament requirements. R.O.C.K.’s therapy horses have been specially trained to interact with children and adults with physical, cognitive and emotional disabilities. The cost of caring for a horse specializing in hippotherapy and therapeutic riding averages $3,600 annually. With a herd of 26, maintenance of these horses exceeds $90,000 per year and as such, fundraisers and donations are crucial.
Themed “True Grit: Celebrating 15 Years of Strength, Courage and Perseverance,” this year’s event attracted more than 600 people, an increase of about 100 since last year. Guests dined on a gourmet meal while country music star Mark Chesnutt performed a selection of his chart-topping songs.
Founded in 1998, R.O.C.K. remains one of the largest hippotherapy and therapeutic riding centers across Texas, serving children, adults and veterans. To ensure R.O.C.K.’s services are accessible and affordable, each client is asked to pay only 40% of the actual cost of each session. The other 60% is funded through personal donations, corporate giving, foundation grants, the support of philanthropic and service organizations in the community, and special events such as the Barn Dance.
About R.O.C.K., Ride On Center for Kids
R.O.C.K., Ride On Center for Kids, is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization created to provide participants in Central Texas counties safe, affordable hippotheraphy, therapeutic riding and related education programs. R.O.C.K., Ride On Center for Kids is a PATH International Premier Accredited Center that serves over 200 participants each year. Nancy Krenek, a licensed physical therapist and horse lover, founded R.O.C.K., Ride On Center for Kids in 1998. Nancy wanted to bring a catalyst for change to individuals with disabilities. Realizing that “movement creates change,” she started with one horse and four participants. Nancy’s vision has grown to over 200 clients, 26 horses, 22 staff and over 350 volunteers per week. For more info, go to www.rockride.org.