* Agency name: Pikes Peak Therapeutic Riding Center (originally called Acts 19:11)

* Address: 13620 Hallelujah Trail, Elbert, CO 80106

* E-mail: pptrc@pptrc.org

* Web site: www.pptrc.org

* Telephone number: (719) 495-3908

* Date established: Founded in 1981, incorporated in 1982

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* Mission statement: Pikes Peak Therapeutic Riding Center provides therapeutic horseback riding for people with disabilities to encourage independence and improve their quality of life.

* Senior managers: Sue Bradt Laabs, president; Christy Stettler, executive director; and Mary Mitten, program director

* Number of people served: 175 annually

n Annual budget: $210,000

* Percentage of budget that is used for client services: 83 percent

* Scheduled fund-raising campaigns during the year:

” Old West Country Fair at Latigo Trails, May 14

” Healing Hooves Gala, Oct. 8

” “Buy a Bale” fund raiser, August/ September

* Projected number of people needing services in the future: Almost one in five Americans has a disability. More than 32,000 students in Colorado have a disability. PPTRC provides such children and adults with an experience that greatly impacts their learning abilities, physical skills and self-esteem, thus enabling them to be as independent and self- sufficient as possible despite their physical, mental or emotional challenges.

* Long-term plans for the agency: We are nearly completed with the renovations at our facility. As the dust settles, we will begin to expand our programs to better serve our riders and increase the number of classes. One possibility is adding the Cart Driving Program for people unable to use therapeutic horseback riding. Another new feature is to expand our partnerships and to educate the community about our programs through “Brunch in the Barn,” events that are hosted by our board of directors.

As always, we continue to seek the most beneficial way to help people with disabilities be as independent as possible and improve their quality of life.

* History of the agency: Pikes Peak Therapeutic Riding Center (PPTRC) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation committed to delivering the highest quality of therapeutic riding to people with disabilities. We are a professional, dedicated, and responsive team working in partnership with the community.

PPTRC is the oldest, largest, and the only “premier accredited” therapeutic riding center in southern Colorado. Since becoming incorporated in 1982, we have been providing equine-assisted therapy to riders facing physical, cognitive, emotional, behavioral and learning challenges. Some of these challenges have resulted from, but are not limited to cerebral palsy, developmental delays, strokes, autism, head injuries, Down syndrome, multiple sclerosis and muscular dystrophy.

In 1999, it was apparent that we were outgrowing our five acres on the edge of Colorado Springs. We accepted the Pikes Peak Range Rider Foundation’s invitation to use approximately 30 acres of their Latigo Heritage Center in northeast El Paso County. We moved into our new facility in March 2004.

* Key personnel background: Many of our key personnel are unpaid volunteers. They are the heart of our program. During the summer session we may need the help of 175 individuals in one week to hold classes. According to our 2003 audit, the value of our program volunteers was $103,930.

Executive Director Christy Stettler started working with nonprofit organizations in 1978. She worked for the U.S. Olympic Committee until her first son was born. A decade later she returned to nonprofits as well as to school at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs where she received a degree in communication. Stettler also worked for the Clean Air Campaign, Pikes Peak Hospice, Pikes Peak Partnership (which included The Arc, Cerebral Palsy Association, MS Society, and Mental Health Association) and the American Heart Association.

Program Director Mary Mitten has been with Pikes Peak Therapeutic Riding Center for more than six years. She has a bachelor’s degree in child development and is certified as an advanced instructor through North American Riding for the Handicapped Association. Mitten has been instructing for more than five years and has more than 20 years of horse experience.

Volunteer Coordinator Rich Wanninger is the newest member of the team. He brings with him a wealth of knowledge and skills from working at organizations such as USA Cycling, U.S. Olympic Festival, and USA Volleyball. He managed the press center at the Atlanta Olympic Games and he has provided media and marketing expertise to the U.S. Olympic Committee and the U.S. Taekwondo Union. Most recently he worked with the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency.

All riding instructors are certified by the North American Handicapped Riders Association, the national governing body for therapeutic riding in North America.

All 14 horses at PPTRC were donated and specially trained for therapeutic riding.

* Something people should know about your agency: Most people are unaware of the power of the horse and how they can help humans. Horses can help build confidence, improve concentration, develop self-awareness and instill self-discipline in our riders. The horse provides a freedom of movement and exhilaration that cannot be duplicated in the clinical setting.