GAIT TRC began with a Board of Directors in 1995. In January 1996, GAIT TRC was incorporated by its founder and Executive Director, Ms. Martha S. Dubensky. GAIT TRC was formally organized as a Federal 501(c)(3) tax-exempt, nonprofit, charitable organization in June 1997.
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GAIT’s mission is “To improve the quality of life of children and adults with special needs through equine activities and therapies, resulting in a more independent life in society.”
GAIT TRC accomplishes its mission using its specially trained horses, professional PATH International Certified Instructors and dedicated, highly trained volunteers to provide equine activities and therapies for people with various disabilities.
GAIT TRC would also not be as effective without the assistance of our state-licensed physical therapists (PT), occupational therapists (OT) and speech-language pathologists (SLP) and credentialed mental health professionals. They are hired by GAIT TRC to perform Hippotherapy and other therapy services.
Who Benefits From GAIT’s Services?
GAIT TRC was established so that people of any age with almost any disability could be addressed and aided by our equine activities and therapies. Our services and programs teach the participants to interact with others in positive ways, to communicate more effectively, and to improve their social skills.
Participants ages 2 – seniors with special needs including but not limited to the following have been helped by using GAIT’s services:
- Attention Deficit Disorder Spectrum (ADD)
- Autism Spectrum
- Cerebral Palsy
- Developmental Delays (DD)
- Down Syndrome
- Head Trauma
- Mental Retardation
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Prader Willi Syndrome
- Spina Bifida
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
Additionally, youth identified by their schools with “at-risk” behaviors benefit from our Equine Facilitated Learning and Equine Facilitated Psychotherapy Programs.
Our Vocational Training Program helps young adults with special needs transition to other job sites and work opportunities.
And our Volunteer Opportunity Program helps many people gain valuable work experience which can lead to an interest in careers in Equine Science and gainful employment within the Equine Industry. Moreover, working with people with special needs results in priceless “hands-on” experience as required by most colleges for students who are interning in PT, OT or SLP or who are working toward their mental health career choice.
Additionally, many of our volunteers put their skills to work for us “just for fun” to help make our community a better place. These volunteers range in ages from young adults 12 years old through retirees over 80 years old! We thank them all!
GAIT’s Instructor Mentoring Program teaches, guides, and gives students who wish to become Therapeutic Riding Instructors the practical, educational, and hands-on experience to become PATH-Certified Instructors.
Therapeutic horseback riding