BURT, N.Y. (WIVB) — Equi*Star in Niagara County offers therapeutic rides for people with disabilities. The horseback riding ranch has 15 horses.
Seven year old Madalyn A’Gostino from Pendleton is one of the children who benefits from the ranch.
She has spinal muscular atrophy. Because of the disease, her muscles don’t function properly and she can’t walk. But Madalyn is able to ride horses. Her mom says the therapeutic rides help her with core strength and feeling relaxed.
“Every week she looks forward to it, she talks to her friends about it at school. It’s a really positive experience for her and let’s her be herself down here and helps her physically and mentally altogether all around,” said Annette D’Agostino, Madalyn’s mom.
“Miracles happen here everyday. I have kids that come in that are antsy and move around a lot and they’re hard to control and our facility allows those kids to come in and just be who they are,” said Peggy Sue Shiesley, Equi*Star therapeutic riding center Program Director.
The ranch sees about 80 to 90 riders a year.
Equi*star just launched a campaign called “Let Them Ride.”‘ This is an effort to raise $60,000 by April 1st, to provide free rides for people with disabilities.