Our Youth Initiative course came back to HorseBack this week. It has been one of our great success stories, and we are very proud of all the young people who have made such great strides. The difference we see in our students is immense. Many of them arrive with little confidence and not much enthusiasm. Some of them are shy and silent; some make a lot of noise to cover up uncertainty and doubt. As the weeks go on, we watch them develop a sturdy sense of self as they learn new skills, get into the habit of hard work, and discover that they can do things they never dreamt of.
Things have happened that we never dreamt of. In today’s picture, you can see Scott and Becky, both of whom came to us on one of the very first Youth Initiative courses. Both of them had their own challenges, and both struggled at the start. Now, they are our shining stars, a perfect poster girl and boy for the power of the programme. Becky is now a permanent member of the HorseBack team, incredibly industrious and capable, and much loved by the horses and humans alike. Scott has been volunteering with us for the last few months, generously giving up his spare time, and will start working officially with HorseBack this summer. He has honed his horsemanship to such an extent that he now plans to make a career working with horses.
We really would never have imagined this when they first arrived. Both these young people defied expectation, found their passion, and worked incredibly hard to make their ambitions come true. We are deeply proud of them both.