Horses Offering People Enrichment (HOPE), a Beijing-based non-profit provides horse therapy for children and adults with special needs. HOPE opened in Beijing in 2009 and currently houses three therapy horses which they care for and with which students interact. On May 28th from 10am-3.30pm at the Roundabout Community Centre in Shine Hills, HOPE will be hosting their first fundraising art auction to help cover the cost of stable rental, horse medical fees, equipment, training, and new horses.
The event will feature supervised arts and crafts for kids, and a Tai Chi demonstration for adults and anyone else that may be interested. The items to be auctioned off have not been completely finalized, but may include such works as Tibetan Tangka paintings or photographs and photo books. For those who wish to make a donation but cannot attend the auction, maximum bids (or simply donations) can be made via WeChat (150 11547338) or through the HOPE Paypal account. HOPE will also be hosting a second auction at the compound where the organization’s stables are located, Grassetown Compound, on June 3rd.
HOPE provides sessions to individuals ages four and older, sometimes making exceptions for children as young as three years old. HOPE’s website states that horse therapy can help to people with a range of disabilities including those with “cerebral palsy, Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Sensory Integration Disorder (SID), as well as those with no specific physical disabilities but with global development delays.”
For those interested in becoming more involved in HOPE outside of attending the auction, the organization has volunteer opportunities. Jacqueline Chen, whose son has been participating in horse therapy at HOPE for years, volunteers at HOPE and is helping to organize the auction. Chen mentioned that international schools and local students have also gotten involved as volunteers at HOPE. “Currently, a student from WAB is designing and creating a sound activation system to be used with the orphans from Bethel, who are blind and/or visually impaired. We also have volunteers helping with administration, including translating documents and the HOPE website.” Other volunteer opportunities include walking alongside horses to ensure a child’s safety during their sessions, helping instructors prepare the area prior to a training session, and providing assistance with horse grooming. No experience with horses is required.
Horses Offering People Enrichment (HOPE) Therapy sessions by appointment. Grassetown Compound (East Side of Wenyu River) email@example.com, WeChat: 150 11547338 北京市顺义区格拉斯小镇马场 (温榆河以东).
Photos: courtesy of HOPE