It was a lucky day for PARD Therapeutic Riding when Chris saw an ad in a local Peterborough newspaper about the program. She says, “I wanted to give back to the community and, with my love of horses, I thought this would be a great way to do so”. With the intention of just volunteering to help out on program nights, Chris’ involvement quickly expanded to include joining the Board of Directors and pursuing her certification as a therapeutic riding instructor. Having achieved her Intermediate Instructor, she admits that she was inspired by the huge smiles that consistently light up the faces of each PARD rider when it’s their turn to start their lesson and mount their favourite horse. Chris notes that the PARD program instills confidence in the riders by showing them that they can accomplish goals they never thought possible.
While the PARD program benefits by having Chris as an instructor, she enjoys, “watching our riders work towards and meet goals, to see them leave behind their assistance devices and sit upon a horse without them, to see our independent riders compete at horse shows and walk away with ribbons, to see in each riders face the unconditional love they have for the horse they are riding. I can’t help but leave each lesson with a smile on my face because of our amazing riders.”
Chris and her son, Josh, are both riders themselves. With her horse, Fancy, at Wendon Hills, Chris continues to train and compete in Eventing competitions.