Little did Debbie Ball know that inviting youngsters to her farm to be with, and ride her horses, that one day there would sprout a healing, loving equine assisted therapy world, and more, and they would call it, B & B Saddle Up Farm. It was as if the horses, and other outside events would chart the course.
As a college professor she would from time to time notice that some of her students needed a little something more. She would invite them to join her at her farm, and the changes she witnessed, the changes the horses brought about, inspired her to do more.
Then while riding one day a stranger stopped their car and asked if they could bring their children and grandchildren to ride with them on Thanksgiving. Of course Debbie said yes. And on Thanksgiving Day, in rolled three vans of eager folks! They saddled eight horses and enjoyed what has become a family tradition! That happy Thanksgiving Day ride helped to shape even deeper thoughts and plans in Debbie's mind of how horses build smiles.
She knew her horses had long proved they had the love, and the spirit to help. Now to channel it. That experience caused Debbie to look into equine assisted therapy.
This December, out of a desire to help children dealing with cancer B & B hosted a fund raising ride and auction and raised $2,000 for a young lady who needs to travel to Philadelphia for her chemo. The therapeutic riding center this young lady was attending is closing, but B & B will pick up some of the activities and plans their first summer camp this summer!
Their local county riding club closed two years ago. Debbie, with the help of, Karley, one of her students, contacted the county officials, offering to take over and reopen the club. The county was thrilled and approved! – This summer, B & B Saddle Up farm will reopen Pine Creek Saddle Club and offer a wide variety of equine assisted therapy, games and fun!
|Karley and Debbie|
"We plan to redo the fence and grounds, remodel the bathrooms and bleachers and be open for events by spring 2014. This is one of the very few options children have in DeKalb County other than drugs." Debbie explained. " Our intent is to include 4-H and FFA, and even High School Rodeo so that we can get the MOST use out of the facility and offer kids a good place to do wholesome activities!"
Thank you, Debbie, for listening to your horses!
Gitty Up ~ Dutch Henry