Local Therapeutic Riding program received Ontario Trillium Foundation “Resilient Communities” grant

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Lanark, ONIn March 2022, ConnectWell Community Health received a $45,000 Resilient Communities Fund grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) for their Therapeutic Riding Program. This grant supported the rebuilding and recovery efforts from the impacts of COVID-19.

“The $45,000 Resilient Communities grant will support rebuilding and recovery efforts from the impacts of COVID-19 through program expansion and increased training for staff and volunteers,” said John Jordan, MPP for Lanark—Frontenac—Kingston. “As we continue to move toward an inclusive health care model in meeting the specific and complex needs of our communities, programs like Therapeutic Riding prove to us time and again what can be accomplished when we dare to think and act outside of the box.  When we talk about “resiliency” – we need look no further than the strength of the bonds created between horse and rider, and the healing impact of that relationship. We are honoured and privileged to support such an inspiring and motivational program”

The funding helped the Therapeutic Riding program enhance and expand program delivery and increase training for staff and volunteers to meet the growing demand for services and to ensure long term program viability.

“As a result of COVID, significant changes had to be made to the Therapeutic Riding program in order for it to continue operating safely – and at a greatly reduced capacity,” said Sarah Sark, Chief Executive Officer of ConnectWell Community Health. “The impact has been felt by the people we serve – the children and their families, and adults made more vulnerable by developmental, physical, mental health or economic limitations. I commend Amy Booth and her team of staff and volunteers for their innovation and dedication to continue serving their clientele during the pandemic. This grant will help bring an important service back to the people who need it most.”

Amy Booth, Therapeutic Riding Program Coordinator, credited the “Ontario Trillium Foundation for playing a big part in enabling us to remain operational and effective during these challenging times.”

ConnectWell Community Health is a not-for-profit charitable organization which provides a wide range of programs and supports in the rural communities of Lanark, Renfrew, Leeds and Grenville Counties. With services ranging from autism to primary health care, community development initiatives to palliative care, ConnectWell Community Health works to support people and communities in achieving and maintaining their best possible health and social well-being. The Therapeutic Riding program was established to provide safe therapeutic recreation services to developmentally and physically disabled children, youth and adults in Lanark County, and has been in operation since 1985.  For more information, please visit: connectwell.ca.

The Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) mission is to build healthy and vibrant communities across Ontario. As an agency of the Government of Ontario, and one of Canada’s leading granting foundations, last year, OTF invested nearly $209M into 2,042 community projects and partnerships, which included funding for the Government of Ontario’s Community Building Fund. Since 2020, OTF has supported Ontario’s economic recovery by helping non-profit organizations rebuild and recover from the impacts of COVID-19. Visit otf.ca to learn more.

Media Contact:
Amy Booth
Therapeutic Riding Coordinator
ConnectWell Community Health
Email: abooth@connectwell.ca
Phone: 613-257-7121 ext 3238

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