News

Important COVID-19 Updates
for our HGR Family

COVID-19 Response Policies Updated 10/19/20

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Keep your chin up! You’ve got a friend in me!
Telehealth, virtual lessons and remote learning opportunities will remain available to all participants and veterans until further notice. Check your emails for links to Google Meets and Google Docs.

HGR 2020 Program Timeline: 

Our Winter 2020 Session successfully took place on site from January 6 – March 12, 2020. We provided 247 lessons on site, and our participants enjoyed learning about different equestrian sports, such as polo. When the Safer at Home Order was enacted for Wisconsin, all employees with remote work capabilities began working from home. We only lost 4 days of providing “make-up lessons” on site due to weather cancellations, and our staff utilized our spring break for veterinarian and farrier appointments, as well as virtual programming for spring.

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Our Spring 2020 Session ran remotely, from April 6 – June 25, 2020, providing 220 lessons online, live. We snail mailed packets and packages to all families without remote accessibility, and thanks to the understanding and generosity of our donors, every employee was able to remain on staff during Wisconsin’s “Safer at Home Order.” We successfully created and implemented an online platform for learning at Heaven’s Gait Ranch to keep our therapeutic services accessible to those in need.

When 84% of PATH Intl. Centers completely shut down this spring, our team at Heaven’s Gait Ranch was among the 16% who acted quickly and created online learning solutions with the remote resources we had available.

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This spring we provided live, telehealth services, approved by the Children’s Long Term Support Waiver, along with individualized services for veterans. Using Google Docs and Google Meets, our certified instructors, participants, and veterans each logged in from home while our program coordinator logged in the horses from HGR.

Content included important topics like herd dynamics, behaviors, and coping mechanisms: like humans, horses prefer to be with their herd vs. in isolation. Behaviors such as weaving (like pacing), cribbing (biting your nails), pawing (stomping your feet), and calling out (shouting/crying while under stress) were all relatable to our participants and veterans. It was imperative to show they were not alone: in fact, their feelings were very much validated by the horses given the confines of their environment.

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Starting June 1, 2020, our staff began returning on site in staggered shifts, after working remotely from home since March 13th. HGR’s health & safety workplace response and prevention policies were finalized by the Board of Directors and practiced with staff on site. Temperature checks and masks became required for all staff at HGR.

Our Summer 2020 Session included onsite and remote services from July 6 – August 27, 2020, with a max capacity of 10 people on site at a given time, including staff, participants, family members, volunteers, and guests. We provided 260 total lessons: 242 on site and 18 online. Volunteer lead walkers, two at a time, returned on site in July. Volunteer side walkers returned in August: parents/siblings were trained as side walkers to further limit the number of households surrounding each participant on site. Onsite private lessons and groups of two became available. Unmounted activities or telehealth services were recommended for participants based on their individual needs. All on-site staff, participants, parents/guardians, and visitors were required to wear masks and get their temperature checked upon arrival.

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Our Fall 2020 Session began September 14 and will run through December 17, including another hybrid of on-site and virtual services. Forty participants, including veterans, enrolled to return on-site for as long as possible. With masks and temperature checks required for all, the maximum capacity at HGR remains 10 at this time. With local school districts having different schedules and instructional plans, HGR will remain open unless 1) the state mandates us to close, or 2) a positive case of COVID-19 is confirmed by someone who has been on site. If/When a positive case is confirmed, all individuals and families will be notified immediately and a two week quarantine with remote services will take effect.

HGR will continue to follow and monitor COVID-19 updates and developments, especially as the local school districts modify and revise their fall/winter plans.

We appreciate your ongoing patience & support!

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Stay Safe. Stay Sane. Stay Healthy!
Virtual Lesson HGR

Important Update Regarding our 2020 Hayburner Fundraiser:

Out of respect and concern for your health & well-being, The Hayburner looked different this year, with opportunities for our out-of-state patrons to safely support our mission from afar.

For the last three years, you made The Hayburner & Silent Auction Fundraiser a growing success, generating 25% of our total operating budget for the following calendar year. You donated horse sponsorships and pledged meaningful participant scholarships, providing up to 75% coverage for our families who qualify for financial need. Not to mention, you generously helped us keep our promise to provide our military veterans with the therapeutic services they deserve — 100% sponsored — year after year. That being said, we want you and your loved ones to stay safe and healthy given the current state of COVID-19.

Know that you can still show your support at any time by mailing a check to
Heaven’s Gait Ranch, Inc.
940 S. Main St., Cedar Grove, WI 53013

Whether you can help us provide relief to our participants’ anxiety and depression,
or whether you can support a veteran who is alone and home-bound,
your support is needed more than ever, so that together, we can to reach those in need.

Your constant prayers and commitment to kindness have made our mission possible thus far,
and we know that your faith and support will give us the courage and strength we need to “walk on” together!

A huge shout out to the Weinrich family & Newport Shores
who continually create ways to support our mission at HGR.

Thank you, Newport Shores, for all you do to support our families in need!

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Thank you, to all who supported
our Dine to Donate Fundraiser
on March 10th at
The Stilt House in Cedarburg!

Huge shout out to Mr. Goggin
& all the staff 
for supporting
our mission again in 2020! 

Hot Off the Press!
Please click on the following link

for the most recent update about our programs and services: 

Jen R News

To view past newsletters & reports, click on the following links:

Annual Report 2019

Summer 2019 Newsletter

Annual Report 2018

Winter 2018 Newsletter 

Summer 2018 Newsletter

Annual Report 2017 

Summer 2017 Newsletter

Winter 2017 Newsletter