About the Pony Club Outreach Programme
In April 2016, the Singapore Polo Club Pony Club launched it’s first 8 week outreach programme for children aged 10 – 13 years of age. The first school to be included in the programme is the Toah Payoh Primary School which has 850 students over 4 grades. The kids were selected from this school because of the particularly troubled households they come from and have to return to once the school day is over, the fact that they had no extracurricular activities and that the parents were not home for them after school.
When asked when they arrived “has anyone ever seen a horse” all remained silent with their heads down, except one who asked if it counted if it was a horse seen on TV. For all of these children this was their first real life encounter with a “live” pony.
It was an exhilarating and moving experience for them all. At the end of the session Singapore Polo Club kids polo shirts were handed out for them to wear for their weekly sessions at the club. The looks on their faces and the pride was just heartwarming.
Equine Therapy or Equine Assisted Therapy is a widely used and respected form of alternative therapy for people with a wide range of physical and emotional disorders, from ADD to hyperactivity, anxiety autism cerebral palsy dementia, depression and developmental delay to name a few.
The Singapore Polo Club is opening up a unique opportunity for these kids who under normal circumstances would never be exposed to the world of horses. The club has a few more schools lined up and a boys home as well who is interested in participating in the programme. The goal is to bring 80 – 100 kids each week to the club from diverse social fabrics in Singapore and offer them a chance to experience and learn about horses