Who we are
Shining Hope Farms was founded in 2002 by Paul and Milinda Kirkpatrick in response to the needs in the community to provide therapeutic services in an enriching farm environment. The purpose of the farms’ services is to improve the quality of life of the participants as well as their families. Shining Hope Farms’ programs have been structured to serve individuals and groups with a variety of disabilities such as Cerebral Palsy, Autism, Down’s Syndrome, Developmental Disabilities, Brain Injuries, Hypotomia, and the like. Our clients find wellness, strength, and hope on the back of a horse.
Shining Hope Farms’ Mission
Shining Hope Farms is a 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to enable children and adults with disabilities to achieve functional goals through the use of equine assisted activities and Therapy Services.
Through the impact of our volunteers and donors, Shining Hope Farms has been successfully able to make our rehabilitative and recreational programs accessible to the poor and needy in our community by making the programs free-of-charge to the majority of participants.
Participants per week across our three locations
Number of volunteers that helped our program in 2016
Hours donated by our volunteers in 2016
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News & Events
Janiah, an almost 6 year old is described by her therapist as sweet and fun, but also very competitive and a hard worker. Diagnosed with cerebral palsy, Janiah has had challenges with her legs and walking independently, as well as with some fine motor tasks. What she also has though, is a group of people that could not be more dedicated to loving on her and helping her to reach her full potential.read more
Shining Hope Farms Receives $7,500 Quality of Life Grant from Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation for Lift System
Shining Hope Farms will use the grant to purchase a lift system for their Mt. Holly location that will allow them to transport clients with paralysis safely on and off the horse. It will also allow them to expand what clients they can serve, as it is currently difficult if not impossible to serve clients of certain sizes or with certain mobility issues as they cannot easily mount and dismount them onto the horse.read more
Noah was born at 25 weeks and weighed 1 lb. 15 oz. Shortly after birth Noah had a stroke. He was diagnosed with prematurity, developmental delay, and significant gastro intestinal complications as an infant, resulting in the need for a feeding tube. Not long after his second birthday, Noah began receiving Occupational Therapy services at Shining Hope Farms, which utilized Hippotherapy (from the Greek “hippo” meaning “horse”) as a treatment strategy.
Noah is now five years old and has been receiving Occupational Therapy for 3 years. During that time Noah has improved his core strength, balance and normalized his tone allowing him to stand and take 10 – 20 steps with one hand assistance. These improvements have also enabled him to maintain his position on his horse. The horse that Noah rides for his treatment sessions is Captain Hook, or Cappy for short.
Noah’s mom says, “Coming to Shining Hope Farms to ride Cappy and to visit the wonderful staff is the highlight of Noah’s week. Noah was barely able to sit up on his own when he first came to the farm for Hippotherapy. Today because of Hippotherapy, his muscles are significantly stronger and he is cruising and learning to walk on his own. Peace surrounds our family as soon as we enter the farm. We are so grateful to have such a remarkable place for Noah to come to. He tells everyone he meets about the farm and Cappy. Noah would not be where is or who he is today without the people and horses of Shining Hope Farms.”