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Southern Reins honored as Carnival Memphis 2022 Children's Charity Initiative Recipient

Updated: Jan 23, 2023

Carnival Memphis members visit Southern Reins and meet TEACH Ambassador Clyde

We are thrilled to share the wonderful news that Southern Reins Center for Equine Therapy was selected as one of three beneficiaries for the 2022 Carnival Memphis Children's Charity Initiative. Funding received will support our new TEACH Program and underwrite modifications to the interior of our wonderful new Freightliner Step Van donated by FedEx Freight so we can safely transport our ponies.

The Carnival Memphis Children’s Charity Initiative was started in 1999. During the past 21 years, Carnival and the Grand Krewes have raised more than $3.2 million with matching funds for three designated charities each year.

This is an incredible opportunity for Southern Reins to bring the benefits our horses can provide to Memphis city schools to enhance literacy, learning readiness, and the social and emotional health of youth in our community.

The TEACH Program incorporates equine-facilitated learning to improve literacy and learning readiness, and contribute to the social and emotional health of children ages 3-7 in Memphis schools.

Learning Readiness Program Southern Reins is collaborating with Perea Preschool to launch a Pilot Program with students ages 3-4, generously funded by the Urban Child Institute. In collaboration with their Director of Education and incorporating Tennessee Academic Standards, the lesson curriculum provides an equine-facilitated educational environment with a hands-on approach to reading, science, geography, social studies, and math. The program consists of weekly classroom visits and interactions with our United Kingdom Shetland ponies. Their small size and gentle nature makes our ponies the perfect partners to provide a new and unique approach to engaging students in learning readiness to promote educational goal achievement. Reading Incentive Program Our Reading Incentive Program is designed to improve literacy and encourage successful reading habits for elementary school children. Incorporating Tennessee Academic Standards, the curriculum is modeled after the “Reading with Rosie” program created by Strides to Success. By creating a positive association between stories of animals and reading, our research-based program offers children a safe educational and interactive opportunity with our ponies to develop their English language skills and motivation to read.

Carnival Memphis President Katherine Dobbs (middle) pictured with Southern Reins Board President Courtney Smith (left) and Executive Director Jill Haag (right)

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