Friday, April 11, 2014

Fidelis Benefit Show

On Sunday, April 6th, Hardee Lane Farms hosted their third annual benefit show in honor of the Fidelis Foundation.  We are beyond grateful for their support.

We were blessed with a dry day and a great turnout.  Congratulations to the winners below:
     Champion:  Sophie Reese
     Reserve Champion:  Shelby Chapman
Adult Walk/Trot:
     Champion:  Carolyn Murray
     Reserve Champion: Karen Lesko
Beginner Walk/Trot/Canter:
     Champion: Maddie Todd
     Reserve Champion:  Anna Gore
     Champion:  Morgan Cook
     Reserve Champion:  Terah Lesko
     Champion:  Madeline Canipe
     Reserve Champion:  Hope Leslie
     Champion:  Nicolle Gillman
     Reserve Champion:  Eli Basile
18 inch Hunter:
      Champion:  Nicolle Gillman
      Reserve Champion:  Mary Drosieko
      Champion:  Nicole Smith
      Reserve Champion:   Christina Ruksenas
2 foot Hunter:
      Champion: Rhett Balding
      Reserve Champion: Grace Sutz
Open Hunter:
      Champion: Cooper Chapman
      Reserve Champion: Nicole Smith

All participants are encouraged to see the photos that were taken at the event at the following website,  Make sure you order your photos, mugs, and keychains!  There are a lot of unique items available!  All proceeds from the photos will benefit the Fidelis Foundation.

The Fidelis Foundation is especially thankful to our judge, Libby Viau, who not only donated her time but her expertise as well.  Thank you, Libby!

As we are always preaching, "it takes a village!"  Our small horse community in Horry County know the benefits our equine partners provide us.  With your help we are able to continue to share these beautiful animals with the at-risk youth in Horry County.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Changing Lives and Growing Gardens

As some of you may know the Fidelis Foundation is blessed to have Sybil Lee as part of our board.  I do not remember when I first met Sybil, but I do remember hearing her name associated with many non-profits in Horry County serving the at-risk and disadvantaged.  It has been 7 years since I have entered the non-profit world and I am glad to say that she and I are on the same team!  Her enthusiasm is contagious!

Yesterday, she and I met at Double C Ranch, the home of Fidelis, to begin our garden.  Although fearful of snakes and other creepy-crawlies I jumped right in.  Double C Ranch is located on the Socastee Swamp.  Although at times it makes for messy paddocks for our horses, it is an ideal location for a garden!

For those readers with green thumbs, the specific location on the property was chosen because it is close to water access, is on a downward slope, has some shade combined with direct sunlight, and is far enough out of the way that it will not interrupt the daily business of the barn.  Here is our before photo.

As you can see, it was run over with weeds and random cinderblocks.  Not to worry!  We were able to use those to construct a wall on the other side.  After some raking and replanting of those "weeds" we were able to find some great soil.  We replanted the weeds above our garden to help with soil erosion.  

The after picture looks promising!

As you can see under the hearty soil was a concrete slab. Although we don't know why it is there, it will make a great solid ground for raised beds.  Also in the after picture, you can see the beginnings of a compost pile in the upper right hand side.  This was constructed using 5 pallets and some left over lumber that was behind the barn!  While constructing our compost pile we found a pile of angry fire ants.  Did you know that baking soda and vinegar will remove these pests from your yard?  

This garden will provide not only a learning experience for our Fidelis riders, but also means for us to reach out into the community.  The vegetables grown here will be donated to various organizations in the community, except for the carrots.  I know a few horses that will be glad to munch on them right here at Double C.  In the mean time we are seeking support from various community members and businesses.

Our needs list currently includes:
Hoses and nozzles
One raised garden bed
Various vegetable seed
Community members with green thumbs who wish to help!

Spring has Sprung!

The Fidelis Family has been busy this Spring!

We started off on Sunday, March 30th with a little Spring Cleaning!  As you may already know our program meets every Sunday of the month.  The first four Sundays we have scheduled for various at-risk youth in our community to come out to the barn.  On the occasional fifth Sunday we encourage our volunteers to come out and ride so they get to enjoy our therapy horses as well!

Unfortunately it was feeling more like January than the end of March and only three of our volunteers could join us.  Before they tacked up they stepped into Double C Ranch's tack room and did a complete make-over!  Thank you to Sybil, Lucy, and Thereze for spending your Sunday with us and organizing our tack room!