Lead by equine behaviour therapist Alan Lockwood, and overseen by our Nurse and OT, we customise each child’s needs with the correct horse, saddle and position. Ranging from sitting, supported sitting, and across back. We have 4 different saddles and various bridles and halters for our two mares (Donated by Rotary Claremont) plus a wonderful bareback pad (donated by one our of parents). Each session is done in the safety of our lung ring fitted with horse proof fencing. When children are self seated or lying across the horse we have two side walkers in place for balance. The lead is either done by Alan or Sue. We are in the process of erecting an electric hoist and wheelchair mounting block so as to be able to assist our children over 20kg. Safety is our main priority and a session will end immediately if one of the horses is unhappy or if a child shows any distress. We also take into account what the child will best benefit from, muscle tone improvement, posture, relaxation, or confidence building.
Both our horses are adopted from the Cart Horse Association – Diva has been in training for 2 years and Viltalgo (in picture) for 1 year
Our program runs from 10am to 12pm every Monday and Wednesday. The horses are first ridding off the property to establish temperament on the day (these are ladies) and also to ensure any access energy is worked out. On return children who have booked their sessions will be correctly matched to their horse and the horse correctly tacked. Please note all sitting or assisted sitting riders where approved riding caps. To make a booking please contact Shakira at our office on 021 910 1578 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Currently this program is only available to registered Iris House families and is free.
Should you wish to donate towards the running cost of our horses please use one of the buttons below (The average monthly cost of keeping our horses in top condition, paying for their trainer, farrier, insurance and groom is over R13 000 per month) Volunteers who have some horse experience are welcome to join us as side walkers.
Last year we were grateful to launch our surfing program in partnership with Walking on Waves and their committed volunteers. It soon became evident that our children would benefit greatly from a more stable and continuous program housed within and run by our organisation. This will ensure that our children enjoy more structured and lasting therapeutic benefits.
We are incredibly grateful to the Walking on Waves (WoW) team for their dedication and initial exposure to the profound benefits of Surfing on children with Special Needs, and know that the WoW team will continue to positively change lives through surfing in Mossel Bay and beyond.
We are excited to launch the new season with our very own equipment together with guidance from Adaptive Surfing Coaches Albert Millard, Ruan Erasmus and our amazing Surfdog Leia. We have witnessed the remarkable therapeutic value and benefits of surfing, and with this new approach we are committed to growing the program so we can bring as many children as possible into the sea. We will place an emphasis on a long term and sustained therapy.
The overwhelming joy expressed by the children who have participated in the program thus far is rewarding enough, but we are even more heartened by the fact that together with our other therapies we have witnessed tangible improvements in their physical health and holistic wellbeing.
We want to express our heartfelt gratitude to REEF South Africa whose support has been of immense importance to us and will continue to ensure the success of our Surfing Program.
To all our past supporters and future friends, please let us know if you can support this particular program from Iris House for we can’t do this without your help.!
Our program runs from November till March. Please contact our offices on 021 910 1578 if you want to book a session (sessions are subject to weather and water conditions)
Should you wish to donate towards the running cost of our surf program please use one of the buttons below (Volunteers who have some surfing experience are welcome to contact us on email@example.com to join the action)