Gaits To Success impacts young lives

Gaits To Success impacts young lives

KILN, MS (WLOX) - Mississippi charity Gaits to Success helps disabled children, but now they're the ones asking for help

The program runs on volunteer help and has been around for 11 years. They make an impact on young lives by helping children with disabilities reach their highest potential.

Eight-year-old Cody McKenna has fun on horseback while at the same time getting some important therapeutic exercise. Three years ago, a serious car accident injured Cody's brain and the signals it sends to his legs, so he needs braces to walk.

"I like coming here because I can get my legs better," said Cody.

Riding and doing light exercises on horse back is actually helping Cody, and many other kids with disabilities, get better. Instructor Carolyn Rhodes says the program helps build self esteem in the kids.

Lizzie Richardson has been a student at Gaits for about a year and a half. Diagnosed with autism at 22 months old, she communicates through a computer.

"Riding horses at Gaits is awesome when I'm on my horse he doesn't know that I'm autistic. He's happy and I'm happy. It's so hard for us to be handicapped that makes it hard for people to see who we really are this program gives us a chance to be excellent," Lizzie said.

Gaits to Success is a non-profit organization staffed by volunteers, but the organization needs more help. Chuck Benvenutti, Gaits Board President says volunteers don't have to have a lot of horse experience because the group will teach volunteers the things they need to do.

If you'd like to volunteer with the program or make a donation you can contact Gaits founder Barbara Kaiser at 255-5368. Or send a donation to: Gaits To Success, P.O. Box 150, Kiln, MS 39556.

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