Even though the pandemic has undoubtedly changed how the Robinson Outreach at RiverCross Ranch (ROARR) visits the ederly around Cochrane, they are not slowing down anytime soon. Just minutes south of Cochrane, ROARR is a non-profit organization that provides Equine Assisted Learning and related therapies to youth and elderly in need.
Accompanied by the two miniature horses, Hugs and Kisses, ROARR has been doing walkarounds at the various senior and long-care facilities around town. The residents can wave and smile at the horses as they trot from window to window.
Steph Gillies, Director of Development for ROARR says that she is grateful that even with the lockdown, they can still brighten the resident’s day. “Normally, we bring the seniors out to our place and we feed them lunch and they visit with our horses, play some bingo, and it's a nice little outing for them because they often don't get to go anywhere. Because of COVID, we're not able to do that so we thought we'd bring the minis to them and visit through the windows.
"We see a lot of familiar faces and they recognize the ponies as well"
Of course, the miniature horses are a huge hit with the residents around Cochrane, but Gillies says that the ponies might enjoy the visit even more. "Hugs and Kisses are half-sisters and they were purchased for the purpose of our nonprofit, and they were just born for this work, they love people and they love to stick their noses in the seniors' walkers and try to take off their slippers. They're just the silliest horses ever, and they just love to be here and be around people."
ROARR plans on continuing their window walks with their miniature horses throughout the pandemic. Go here to learn more about Robinson Outreach at RiverCross Ranch.