The 4-H Therapeutic Riding Program of Carroll County was established in 1978 to provide an opportunity for children and adults with disabilities to benefit from riding horses. Beginning with lessons at a local farm, the program moved to the Ag Center outdoor ring and then to the indoor arena in 1997. Everyone associated with the 4-H Therapeutic Riding Program is a volunteer, including riding instructors, therapists, horse handlers, and side-walkers.
Our horses were originally borrowed and brought to lessons weekly. Now all are donated, loaned or leased to the program. During each session they are stabled and cared for on land loaned by the Farm Museum and then sent to vacation homes. Many are retired from successful careers in the show ring, hunt field, dressage arena, or as schooling horses or backyard ponies. All are trained specifically to work in our therapeutic riding program and handle unusual sights, sounds, and sensations, such as wheelchairs, canes, bouncing balls, unbalanced riders, side-walkers crowding close.
In its 28 years of operation, more than 100 horses and 4000 volunteers have worked together to provide therapeutic riding classes to more than 2000 riders.