Titled, “Enriching the Lives of Others,” Sydney Susaraba, senior at Warsaw Community High School, recently received a top rating at the FFA State Convention for a speech that explained her work with Magical Meadows. Magical Meadows is a therapeutic horseback riding facility located in Warsaw.
Sydney volunteers at least two times a week at Magical Meadows helping children, youth and adults with physical and/or developmental disabilities. The therapy improves physical health, relaxes tight muscles, increases balance, builds muscle strength, sharpens hand/eye coordination, improves social skills, and promotes a sense of control and self-confidence.
The riders often feel a sense of freedom that they have never experienced before. Sydney gets to work with many WCHS students including Anjali Bass (WCSH), Kylah Cook (Washington Elementary) and Lizzy Rice (Jefferson Elementary).
“I originally volunteered at Magical Meadows to get my “horse fix,” said. “Now the horses are secondary to working with the kids and adults!” Susaraba would like for more people to know about Magical Meadows and highly recommends getting involved.
For students like Lizzy Rice, Kylah Cook and Anjali Bass, horseback riding is sheer joy. The smiles on their faces and the giggles that can be heard as they direct their horses around the arena are proof that this opportunity is a vital part of their learning experience. Andy Bass, teacher at Edgewood Middle School and father of Anjali said, “She is fearless on that horse and would happily ride off into the sunset if we let her!”
Tammy Stackhouse, director of the program, said in addition to the benefits for the riders, her life continues to be enriched everyday by the students at Magical Meadows.
Questions or to visit the Magical Meadows, contact Tammy Stackhouse at 574-265-3085 or visit the website at www.themagicalmeadows.org.