December 2023 Update

How did another year go by already? As the days pass and we creep closer to a new year, it’s hard not to sit back and reminisce on another year gone by. The sad times, the losses, and the challenges all mingle together with the tremendous breakthroughs, new opportunities, and blessings…and over and through it all, we’re reminded of God’s faithfulness and provision.

Thank you, from the bottom of our hearts, for sharing your time, talents, and joy with us this year!

We have witnessed truly incredible things, including the opportunity to serve a record number of participants through Equine Assisted Services. YOU made it possible for us to feel a continued sense of community, hope, and friendship grow at the barn this year.

We hope you have a blessed Christmas, and are excited to see you in the new year!

Giving Tree stocked with presents in the arena.

We are so grateful to be a part of such a caring, giving community. Thank you to everyone who included Renew in their gift giving this Christmas. Your gifts are a blessing.

It was so wonderful to see you all at the Christmas Open House and Carolyn Stich Painting Party earlier this month! It was a spectacular evening of fun and fellowship. Thank you to all who came! We are already excited for next year!

Year End Gifts Change Lives

Many today are struggling as they experience daily life without hope, peace, or the love that comes from being part of a community. For those living with a disability, these challenges are compounded and at times can seem insurmountable. Families feel isolated, overburdened, and cut off from many activities. At Renew, our goal is to conquer these feelings by providing positive life change with every horse experience.

Katie, one of our young adult participants, was willing to have her mother share her story in these words:

Renew is very special and we are thankful God led us to Renew. Katie has been riding for most of her life, it continues to benefit her in ways that she could not find doing any other activity. It isn’t just a place to ride – it has become a place to grow, develop friendships and test out new confidences in a safe and caring environment. 

Katie was diagnosed with moyamoya disease in 1999 when she had bilateral strokes. We were told at the time she may never walk or talk, but that because of her young age she had a much greater chance of recovery.  She began intense PT, OT, and speech therapy. Katie’s early introduction to therapeutic riding played a significant role in her recovery and it continues to play a role in her overall wellness. Katie’s continued mobility is dependent on her riding. When she has a break from riding she loses her flexibility, strength and her independence.

Katie has experienced 23 years of therapeutic riding, five different riding programs in four states, 20 different horses and many, many instructors and volunteers. Riding and horses have been part of her life for as long as she can remember and it is the most important part of her life after her faith, her family and her service dog, SSD Zola. She has bonded with each and every horse and each one has given her exactly what she needs at the time – challenges, connections, confidence, physical and mental strength, and riding has even given her back her speech. 

The confidence Katie has gained at Renew has definitely carried over into her life outside the barn. She participated in Barn Buddies this summer and loved the chance to give back by volunteering at the barn. The benefit she receives from riding weekly carries over in her ability to ambulate and be independent at home. When Katie isn’t riding weekly, she definitely has more falls because of loss in strength and flexibility. Riding is such an important part of her retaining her independence.

A gift to Renew will enable such positive change to be possible for others like Katie in our community. We could not do this ministry without your help. If you are able, please consider a year-end tax deductible gift to Renew to make miracles happen in another’s life. You will be a hero to the Renew family, and to Katie!

And a heartfelt, humble thank you to all those who have already made a year end gift to bless the riders at Renew!

Change a life with a gift

Gifts can be made securely online through the Donate button at the top of the page, or checks can be mailed to:

Renew TRC 5080 146th Ave Holland MI 49423

Big News!!

We can’t keep this a secret any more! We are thrilled to share that the Strikwerda family is growing! Shaina, Renew’s Program Manager, is expecting their second child in the spring of 2024. To say we are excited to welcome this new peanut into the Renew family is a tremendous understatement. We hope you will join us in praying for and celebrating with the Strikwerdas during this exciting time.

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