Tag Archives: horses

Gold Award Girl Scout: Kennedy Taylor, Elbert, “Hold Your Horses”

What did you do for your Gold Award Project?

Shire horses have been on the endangered species list for a very long time because they were used in wars to pull ammunition carts. During WWII, they were killed by the thousands by the airstrikes across Europe. Michelle Conner, my sponsor for this project and owner of Thunder Cliff Shires, started her organization by rescuing young Shires from slaughter. Now, she breeds them as well as incorporates a variety of horses for therapy, teaching people about her animals and the importance of them. Michelle is working very hard to bring the Shire breed back to life, as well as educate and help people with disabilities or those with anxiety/depression, including wounded warriors suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Thunder Cliff Shires is nonprofit and therefore, needs help anywhere they can find it. I decided to help them by building an obstacle course to help train their horses more effectively. My obstacle course consisted of three obstacles: a “tire bridge,” which was for the horses’ carriage rides; cowboy curtain, which is a large wooden frame with pool noodles hanging down to get the horses used to touch; and a tire pyramid to get them used to uneven ground. The obstacle course helps the horses with unfamiliar circumstances, getting them used to different touches and unstable environments, so that it they are calmer when dealing with children.

How did you measure the impact of your Gold Award made on your target audience?

I wanted my audience to learn self-improvement and the ability to get to know both themselves and the animals better. I want them to learn that anything is possible and that there is always somebody there to help them. Nobody likes to feel helpless and animal therapy is a very good method of improving moods. I would also like my target audience to know how the animals help them as well as what Thunder Cliff Shires does for animals and individuals with disabilities. I ensured that they would learn about my project and its effect, as well as how it could help them or those around them. Michelle has promised to tell visitors to the ranch about my project, and I created a pamphlet that I am going to show and hang up. I have also kept in touch with Thunder Cliff Shires to ensure that the team educates people on the project and how it helps them and the horses.

How is your project sustainable? How will your project continue to impact after your involvement?

Thunder Cliff Shires has expressed how much they needed the obstacles and said they would most definitely use them for years. Sharing the project will also bring others to possibly come to her organization and check it out. Sharing may also give others the idea to do similar things, therefore ensuring that there’s motivation to continue use by seeing how much an obstacle course could help. The horses are also going to breed, causing them to need to be trained to help people- and so the cycle continues. The obstacles are also well built and are ensure to stand throughout the years because of their strength. Thunder Cliff Shires has tours for Wounded Warriors, elder homes, etc. and the obstacles and sign will be there to educate visitors about my project. I will also continue to help them should they need any support from me. I’ve made myself available to help with tours and have created a group of volunteers that have offered support in the future as well.

What is your project’s global and/or national connection?

Hopefully, by sharing my project and plans, other organizations all around the world will see and use my ideas to benefit their own animals or people. Using these obstacles to help animals get trained will help them get trained faster- and trust is extremely important if these animals are to deal with people that may need that help. It may also help to educate people about horses and about the endangered Shire horse, possibly influencing them to look into helping the animals. It may also educate people on the method of therapy through horses and how helpful it could be to help or calm down an individual. Advertising what I’ve done with my project will also influence others to volunteer and support other organizations. Prior to helping with my project, none of the people that volunteered were aware of the endangered species, the therapy, or the organization. Teaching them will spread and they will tell others, and the education will continue. I have asked Thunder Cliff Shires to post my plans so that others can have easier access to them. Organizations all around will be inspired by my plans, and Thunder Cliff Shires is connected to a network of other people and places like them so they can spread my project.

What did you learn about yourself?

I learned that if I motivate myself and buckle down to get to work, then I can do anything I set my mind to. I also learned that no matter how hard something may seem at first, it isn’t that much work in the end and there are several ways to see the work as something smaller. Instead of dreading and saying “I have to do this, this, and this,” I instead would tell myself “you only have to do three more things to complete the project” and I think that helped me a lot. I also worked on decreasing my procrastination, which not only helped with this project, but will help with school as well.

How will earning your Gold Award impact your future?

The Gold Award will impact my future in many ways. The award provides more opportunities for future education. I want to go into a STEM field and the Gold Award will look very good on my college application, as it will show that I can collaborate with others to complete a project. It has also motivated me and made me realize I can do anything I put my mind to. It taught me that not everything is scary, and that I can be more laid back about things. This will probably stick with me for the rest of my life.

Why do you feel the Gold Award was an important part of your Girl Scout experience?

I feel like the Gold Award was an important part of my Girl Scout experience because it felt like all the years, I’ve put into Girl Scouts led up to it. All of the smaller projects were preparing me and everything now seems like it was extremely important to do instead of just work to get me out and talking to people into the community. I also feel like I have done what a Girl Scout should do, which is give back to her community. I also feel very accomplished with my Girl Scout career.

How did earning your Gold Award help you become a G.I.R.L?

I feel like getting my Gold Award made me more comfortable with taking risks. I’ve always been a very anti-hazard person, and anything even slightly outside of my comfort zone, I refused to do. This project helped me to realize that the worst thing anyone can say is no, and that to go out and do things is the only way I will learn and improve as a person. Going outside of my comfort zone is something I’ve noticed I do more, even in the short period of time it’s been since I have finished my project. I believe that this will be very important for the rest of my life.

**IMPORTANT NOTE: This blog represents only a small fraction of the hard work, dedication, and requirements that go into earning a Girl Scout Gold Award. It is simply a brief summary, which is meant to inspire Girl Scouts to Go Gold in the future. For more information on earning your Gold Award, please email highestawards@gscolorado.org.

Gold Award Girl Scout: Bella Lucero, Thornton, “I Can Ride”

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

For my Gold Award project, I created and hosted a half day therapeutic horseback riding camp for kids with disabilities in my community, focusing on kids from low-resource families who would not otherwise have an opportunity to try horseback riding as a therapy option. I partnered with two existing schools, Bal Swan and Twice Exceptional, to identify kids that fit the audience I wanted to target, and then invited them to participate in this camp. I solicited donations from area businesses for camp day snacks and T-shirts for all participants. 2BG Equestrian School in Broomfield donated the use of their arena and horses to host my camp. I gathered and trained many volunteers who donated their time assisting the kids to be safe in the saddle.

Everyone worked together to ensure this camp was a success!

How did you measure the impact your Gold Award project made on your target audience?

I measured the impact of my Gold Award project by having each rider fill out a before and after camp survey. I asked if they had any experience with horses and how comfortable they felt around horses and to rate their experience at camp. I also asked for feedback, their favorite and least favorite part of camp, and what I can do differently next time.

How is your project sustainable? How will your project continue to impact after your involvement?

My project is sustainable as I have created a How-To Guide with directions and guidance on how to replicate my camp and shared this with several other riding barns throughout the Denver Metro Area. My project Advisor, Michelle L., has signed a Letter of Commitment agreeing to continue hosting this camp in the future. I have also created a Facebook page for my project, I Can Ride, to give it a platform on social media. Additionally, I shared my project at a recruitment event in my service unit as well as on Band, a leader discussion app.

What is your project’s global and/or national connection?

My project’s global and national connection is not only evident in my Facebook page, but also by sharing my project with No Barriers Summit. This is a summer camp held every year in Colorado for participants with various disabilities to try new events. It is my hope they will add some aspect of therapeutic riding to their program. It is also not unrealistic to hope that GSUSA will hear about the ability to address the needs of kids with disabilities and begin implementing changes to Girl Scout summer camps to enable Girl Scouts with limitations to participate safely in riding programs.

What did you learn about yourself?

Throughout my project, I learned that I can persevere. Three years is a long time to keep working at something, trying to see it to completion, and I did it. I also learned that I am capable of talking to many different people, organizing and training volunteers, and most of all, overcoming obstacles. For example, I had to change the date of my camp twice due to uncontrolled circumstances! Although this was frustrating and delayed my project, keeping a positive attitude helped and everything worked out in the end.

How will earning your Gold Award impact you in the future?

I believe earning my Gold Award will impact my future by serving as a talking point on college, scholarship, and employment applications. I recently toured the University of Wyoming and discussed my project with the Equine Science Department and was excited to receive positive praise from them! Schools and potential employers will know that I can promote and host a big event and that I care about positively impacting those with disabilities, that I can create happiness and provide a challenge in their lives. I want to continue to connect with kids in my community at future camps and hopefully see them around the barn or hear about them continuing to pursue riding as a therapy option in their lives.

Why do you feel the Gold Award was an important part of your Girl Scout experience?

The Gold Award was an important part of my Girl Scouting experience as it required all of the skills I have learned in the past 11 years: teamwork, leadership, initiative, goal setting, planning, and project implementation. So many of the community service projects I have been involved in because of Girl Scouting involved giving back to the community I live in, to serve others, and make the world a better place. The Gold Award is the capstone of all abilities and skills that Girl Scouting tries to teach a girl. I know I can achieve anything I put my mind to in the future because I earned the Gold Award.

How did earning your Gold Award help you become a G.I.R.L. (go-getter, innovator, risk-taker, leader)?

Earning my Gold Award helped me become a risk-taker because it forced me out of my comfort zone. I had to coordinate volunteers for an event, speak in public with confidence, and trust that this big idea was going to have a positive impact on my participants. I’ve been riding horses for 12 years, I take some of the hard skills of riding and caring for horses for granted. Breaking it down to my audience and focusing on the fun to be had was a risk to me, as I didn’t want my riders to be nervous or scared from lack of experience. Undertaking any large project is risky, but so worth it!

**IMPORTANT NOTE: This blog represents only a small fraction of the hard work, dedication, and requirements that go into earning a Girl Scout Gold Award. It is simply a brief summary, which is meant to inspire Girl Scouts to Go Gold in the future. For more information on earning your Gold Award, please email highestawards@gscolorado.org

Juniors: Earn Your “Horsemanship” badge

Submitted by Gabriella Grieve

Metro Denver

Sedalia

Attention Girl Scout Juniors! Earn your “Horsemanship” badge with Inspiring Strides at a three-hour clinic in 2020. Learn everything horse related and complete all requirements to earn your badge. The clinic will cover everything including grooming, handling, arena etiquette, horse anatomy, tack anatomy, horse behavior, and riding!
To register, please email Gabriella Grieve at Inspiring Strides at inspiringstridesco@gmail.com. The registration process does include a liability release waiver, photo release, and safety rules form.

Dates: February 9, 16, 23, and March 1

Time: 2:30 – 5:30 p.m.

Registration Deadline: One week prior to clinic. Class has maximum space for six participants, so please register early!

Cost: $50 / rider

Clinic is held in an outdoor arena, so please wear weather-appropriate, as well as horse appropriate, attire. Long pants and closed toe shoes are mandatory. Bicycle helmets are not appropriate for riding, so please only bring ASTM approved helmets. If you do not have an ASTM approved helmet, there will be some available for riders.

For more information about Inspiring Strides visit us on Facebook or Instagram using the handle @inspiringstridesco
Questions? Don’t hesitate to reach out via email at the above address or through phone at (303) 495-9259.

Hope to see you there!

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Troop 77904 learned how horses can help people feel better

Submitted by Kelly Davidson

Northern & Northeastern CO

Longmont

Brownie Troop 77904 from Longmont visited the Colorado Therapeutic Riding Center earlier this month to explore the connection between animal and human compassion.

The girls learned that the center takes in donated horses and trains them to help people with disabilities and other challenges.

The girls took a tour of the facility and learned how special adaptive devices enable people with physical disabilities to ride horses. The girls also learned that horses can comfort people who are sad or facing other challenges.

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Juniors: Earn your “Horsemanship” badge with Inspiring Strides

Submitted by Gabriella Grieve

Metro Denver

Sedalia

Girl Scout Juniors can earn their “Horsemanship” badge with Inspiring Strides at a three-hour clinic on October 13, 2019. Learn everything horse-related and complete all requirements to earn your badge. The clinic will cover everything including grooming, handling, arena etiquette, horse anatomy, tack anatomy, horse behavior, and riding!

Time: 1 – 4 p.m.

Cost: $50 / rider

To register, please email Gabriella Grieve at Inspiring Strides at inspiringstridesco@gmail.com. The registration process does include a liability release waiver, photo release, and safety rules form. Class has limited space so please register early!

Deadline: October 6

Clinic is held in an outdoor arena, so please wear weather-appropriate, as well as horse appropriate, attire. Long pants and closed toe shoes are mandatory. Bicycle helmets are not appropriate for riding, so please only bring ASTM approved helmets. If you do not have an ASTM approved helmet, there will be some available for riders.

Badges are provided!

For more information about Inspiring Strides visit us on Facebook or Instagram using the handle @inspiringstridesco.

Questions? Don’t hesitate to reach out via email at the above address or through phone at (303) 495-9259.

Hope to see you there!

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Earn your “Horsemanship” badge

Submitted by Gabriella Grieve

Metro Denver

Sedalia

Girl Scout Juniors: Earn your “Horsemanship” badge with Inspiring Strides at a three-hour clinic on September 14, 2019 from 1-4 p.m. Learn everything horse-related and complete all requirements to earn your badge. The clinic will cover everything from grooming, handling, arena etiquette, horse anatomy, tack anatomy, horse behavior, and riding!

To register please email Gabriella Grieve at Inspiring Strides at inspiringstridesco@gmail.com. The registration process does include a liability release waiver, photo release, and safety rules form.

Cost: $50 /rider

Deadline: September 7 Class has limited space so please register early!

The clinic is held in an outdoor arena, so please wear weather-appropriate, as well as horse appropriate, attire. Long pants and closed-toe shoes are mandatory. Bicycle helmets are not appropriate for riding, so please only bring ASTM-approved helmets. If you do not have an ASTM-approved helmet, there will be some available for riders.

For more information about Inspiring Strides, visit us on Facebook or Instagram using the handle @inspiringstridesco.

Questions? Don’t hesitate to reach out via email at the above address or call (303) 495-9259.

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

CSU’s Equine Experience Time to Ride

Submitted by Tiare Santistevan

Northern & Northeastern CO

Fort Collins

Girl Scouts are invited to CSU’s Equine Experience Time to Ride workshop on November 3, 2018! Girl Scout Juniors can work on the requirements for the “Horsemanship” badge. Girls will learn grooming, handling, horse body language, riding, and more. Classes may be indoor and outdoors depending on the weather. Please wear horse appropriate clothing, including long pants and closed shoes, preferably boots with a heel. Additional helmets and boots will be available for riders.

Riding Time: 9 a.m. – 12:20 p.m. Must choose a riding time slot for each Girl Scout. Four girls per group.

Cost:$ 20/Girl Scout

Registration deadline: October 27, 2018

Registration includes permission, liability, and photo release forms, which will be emailed to the required email.

Register online: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/70a0e49a4a62aaaf85-csutime

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Earn your “Horsemanship” badge with Colorado Reining Heroes

Submitted by Gabriella Grieve

Metro Denver

Parker

While fall classes are currently full,  Reining Heroes invites you to join them for their spring workshops! Learn about horses and complete requirements for your “Horsemanship” badge. The class will cover grooming, handling, learning the body language of a horse, riding, and more!

Dates:

February 10, 23, 2019

March 2, 23, 30

April 6, 20, 27

May 4, 11, 18

Time: 1-3 p.m.

Cost: $40/Girl Scout

Class is limited to 10 girls. Please email Paula Quillen at Colorado Reigning Heroes at reigningheroes@yahoo.com to register and for payment instructions. Registration will include permission, liability, and photo release forms that will need to be completed before the event.

Registration Deadline: February 2

Classes may be held outdoors or inside an arena depending on weather. Girls need to wear appropriate clothing including long pants and closed toe shoes. Helmets will be available for riders.

For more information about Colorado Reigning Heroes visit http://www.coloradoreiningheroes.com/.

40963104_girl_scout_flyer_-_spring

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Earn your “Horsemanship” badge with Colorado Reining Heroes

Submitted by Gabriella Grieve

Metro Denver

Parker

Girl Scout Juniors can earn their “Horsemanship” badge with Colorado Reigning Heroes in 2018! Learn about horses and complete requirements for this badge. The class will cover grooming, handling, learning the body language of a horse, riding, and more!

Dates: September 8, 16, 22, and 30; October 6, 20, and 28; November 3 and 17; December 1 and 15; and January 5

Time: 1-3 p.m.

Cost: $40/Girl Scout. Class is limited to 10 girls.

Register: Please email Paula Quillen at Colorado Reigning Heroes at reigningheroes@yahoo.com to register and for payment instructions. Registration will include permission, liability, and photo release forms that will need to be completed before the event.

Registration Deadline: August 25

Classes may be held outdoors or inside an arena depending on weather. Girls need to wear appropriate clothing including long pants and closed toe shoes. Helmets will be available for riders.

For more information about Colorado Reigning Heroes visit http://www.coloradoreiningheroes.com/.

Questions? Please contact Paula Quillen at
reigningheroes@yahoo.com. Paula is happy to have prospective troops tour the barn before registering by appointment.

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Rocky Mountain Horse Expo: Youth horse experience

Submitted by Julie Fischer

Northern & Northeastern CO

Allenspark

Are you interested in learning about horses, new to horses, never ridden or have ridden some, earning a new badge, or just love horses? Join us for hands-on horse activities, learning stations, a scavenger hunt, and horseback riding at the Rocky Mountain Horse Expo (RMHE).

Girl Scout Juniors can also complete requirements towards the Horseback Riding badge. Take home a fun, fact filled horse workbook plus handouts and giveaways from the Rocky Mountain Horse Expo.

Explore the many other activities at the Expo (www.rockymountainhorseexpo.com) including the “Mane Event”
There is also a special session for Girl Scouts who have never ridden before. Please contact us for more information.

Date: Saturday, March 10, 2018 from 9 a.m.-noon and 1-4:30 p.m.

Location: National Western Event Center

Costs and Registration:

□ Registration: $40 for the Youth Horse Experience, admission into RMHE for 1 girl and 1 adult, and 2 tickets to the Mane Event.

□ Extra tickets for Expo and Mane Event are $10 with combo pricing.

Registration: https://www.coloradohorsecouncil.com/rmhe/

Other activities and Events
Horse breeds scavenger hunt – this scavenger hunt will take you around the Expo to learn about famous breeds of horses from around the world as well as horse feed and nutrition.
Equine Art in the Park -Gallery – tour the art gallery to view top horse and cowboy artists from across the United States.
Other riding disciplines to learn about could include Vaulting, PoloCross, outfitting/packing, etc. Other industry professionals to learn about could include veterinarian, farrier, etc.
The “Mane Event”: Finish the Day with a magical evening performance with nearly 100 horses dancing, spinning, leaping and showing us what remarkable creatures they are, along with many more family friendly activities.

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.