So once we got to Bolivia and I realised I wouldn’t be able to smell like horse for a year (!?) I searched the Internet for possible places to ride or volunteer with horses while I was here. With pure luck I came across ‘up close Bolivia’ (UCB) and amazing charity with so many different dimensions running from a town called Jupapina 1hr outside of La Paz.
Through UCB I got in contact with Mary Wannamaker an incredibly caring and committed lady who is one of the volunteer coordinators and the lead in the Hipoterapia volunteer program as part of UCB.
She graciously agreed to just let me turn up and from then on I’ve been able to go at the weekends to help with disabled children riding the ponies.
I started riding a beautiful 5yo mare called Diana who has a 4 month old foal at foot who is so nosey and so brave! Diana hasn’t really had much schooling so she doesn’t really understand all the aids but she is very smart so it’ll be great fun to work with her.
Today Humberto let me ride his prize stallion. The most handsome 5yo chestnut Arabian you have ever seen!
He moves beautifully and is so responsive. I’m a bit 😍 in love with this gorgeous pony!
This weekend we have been teaching some of the kids how to ride. The charity uses the horses for relaxation and movement for children with high level disability. But also aims to teach equitation to children who would be able to learn and enjoy it to give them skills and keep them interested in the activities.
Today we learnt in English and Spanish as the kids are teaching me as well!
This is Caeser riding Estrella below. He is already a cracking jockey picking up the basics in 2 days!
And to top this weekend off I had a proper play and cuddle with this little hero! This is Hermes the 4 month old foal of Diana. He is such a little tinker. But will be amazing for the kids as he’s already so friendly and brave.
Another great weekend with Fundacion Porvenir. We are going to try and work with some of the kids towards maybe doing a dressage walk trot test by the end of their 10 week program. This weekend we worked on directional changes, figures of eight and writing letters with the horses walking the letters. Next week we might build up to a trot!
It is so much fun and the boys I’m teaching are learning so quickly it’s a pleasure to be able to be so involved with this program.
So the first 10 week course I have been involved in has finished. Couldn’t be prouder of the kids. I got to see some of the youngsters change during the course while riding ‘gemello’. We worked on counting, colours, singing, or just relaxing and being peaceful in the horses. My three students rode their dressage test independently, stopped and saluted the judge at the end and got their marks. I was as giddy as them by the end!
All the students received their certificates in a lovely ceremony on Sunday. And my boys rode independently to collect theirs.
We all have one weekend of a breather! Then it starts all over again. This session I’m planning Trec games as well as continuing with dressage work and we’ve been practising in preparation.
So this course we’ve been riding through channels, into squares, around circles, over small steps, picking up hoops and putting them on barrels! It’s been all go! Kiara is my new pony club teaching pony as she is brave and little so the boys can reach all the kit and she isn’t scared (of anything!). She is being a dream!