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Money Raised for Horse Therapy - KOAM TV 7

Money Raised for Horse Therapy

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BAXTER SPRINGS, KANSAS -  Today, area motorcyclists take part in a "poker run" from Frontenac, KS to Baxter Springs.  

All to raise money for the Horses of Hope scholarship fund, which helps pay for disabled people receiving therapeutic horse training.  

Horses of Hope helps people like Andy Shepherd.

"He has cerebral palsy," Andy's grandmother Linda said. "He cannot walk on his own. His kneecap has moved up and his right kneecap is floating. And he has a lot of difficulty walking. And [doctors] cannot do anything for this until he becomes an adult, stops growing, and changing." 

Andy has taken part in horse assisted therapy at Horses of Hope for almost two years.

"There's equine-assisted learning, therapeutic riding -- which is more for sports and recreation -- and hippotherapy," co-founder of Horses of Hope Vallerie Sweeton said. "Which is directed towards physical, occupational, speech therapy. Using the movement of the horse to work on those therapy goals."

Vallarie Sweeton opened Horses of Hope in 1997,and says it's not uncommon to get cases as severe as Andy's. She, along with 50 area bikers, held a "poker run" to fund scholarships so others like Andy can take the reigns of their own life.  

Organizers say when all funds are accounted for, they expect to have raised over $2,000.  
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