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Little Bits Therapeutic Riding Association

Program Profile

Little Bits Therapeutic Riding Association for Persons with Disabilities (LBTRA) provides a recreational riding program for persons with disabilities. We are an inclusive, diverse, not-for-profit, charitable organization, established in 1975. With an emphasis on the development of riding techniques/skills, our riders gain independence, confidence, ability, physical, emotional, and mental wellbeing.

 

The program is held at the Whitemud Equine Learning Centre Association (WELCA) (12510 - Fox Drive) in the scenic North Saskatchewan River valley of Edmonton. WELCA is serviced by the Disabled Adult Transportation System (DATS) system and is on an Edmonton Transit System (ETS) route. Little Bits is an independent user group of the WELCA facility and pays significant funds for the use of the arena and lesson horses.

 

Class schedules consist of a 10-week winter session, a 10-week spring session and a 10-week fall session. Classes are run on Monday and Tuesday mornings for adults, Tuesday and Wednesday afternoon/evenings for children and a limited number of already enrolled adults and all day Sunday for children. Classes are one hour in length and run back-to-back on the hour. We also ride for five days (one week) in July/August for currently enrolled winter session riders only. All safety equipment is provided, and specially selected and trained horses are used in the program.

 

All instructors are certified understanding the principles of therapeutic riding recognized by the Canadian Therapeutic Riding Association (CanTRA).

 

LBTRA could not operate without the many dedicated volunteers who serve as leaders, side-walkers, and helping in the barn grooming and tacking up the horses. Volunteers are fully trained, and no prior experience is necessary. LBTRA holds a Volunteer Training Session every winter and fall before the start of those riding session. Volunteers must be at least 14 years old to apply, and this can be done through our website at: www.littlebits.ca or by contacting littlebitsvolunteer@gmail.com for information. There are also many other volunteer opportunities in public relations, fundraising, and on committees of the Board of Directors.

 

Riders must purchase a yearly LBTRA membership, which at the present time is $15.00. Riding fees are currently $350.00 for each of the 10-week, winter, spring and fall sessions. A participation service commitment of 5 hours per session (spring, fall and winter) is also required. This is accomplished by having the members submit a postdated cheque for $160.00 for each one of the 10-week sessions they may ride in. Each cheque is destroyed when the 5 service hours are completed. LBTRA hosts several fund-raising events throughout the year at which the participation service hours can be satisfied. The riding fees are subsidized by approximately 60% through these LBTRA fund raising efforts.

 

LBTRA is run by a volunteer board of directors. These dedicated individuals meet the often throughout the year.

 

LBTRA currently accepts riders onto their Waiting List using the application from our website: www.littlebits.ca. When an appropriate spot becomes available, riders are then enrolled from the waiting list. The riders are placed according to age and ability. Currently the wait is approximately 12-18 months for children, and currently we are no longer accepting adults into our program.

 

Donations may be made to Little Bits via the Canada Helps website, the Shaw Charity Classic – Birdies for Kids Event, Benevity, (links may be found on our website), by e-transfer to: payments@littlebits.ca or via mail.

 

LBTRA is a registered charitable organization. To keep our program affordable for all riders, we rely on donations from individuals as well as corporate donors, and apply for grants to help fund our operations.

 

For more information contact LBTRA at (780) 476-1233 or at: info@littlebits.ca  

 

LBTRA

Box 29016, Pleasantview PO

Edmonton, Ab.

T6H 5Z6

Charitable Number: 11902 – 1277 RR0001

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