The H.A.Y. Foundation wants to express our gratitude for being awarded 2 grants from the Nixa Community Foundation to serve children who have endured trauma. In the past 4 years, the H.A.Y. Foundation has served approximately 90 to 100 children per year who are dealing with emotional challenges. In the past 18 months, referrals to the H.A.Y. Foundation have shown a drastic increase in youth who have experienced trauma in their life. H.A.Y. Foundation staff members have witnessed that these children frequently display anxiety, anger, poor communication skills and possess low self-esteem. From January 2018 through May of 2019, the H.A.Y. Foundation has completed 148 referrals for services. Of these 148 youth, 50 have endured one or more of the following types of trauma:
1. Physical trauma: Trauma due to physical abuse, severe neglect or starvation
2. Sexual trauma: Trauma due to rape or sexual molestation
3. Psychological trauma:
Trauma due to death of a family member
Trauma due to abandonment by one or both parents or legally being removed from the parents’ care
As a result of the physical, sexual and/or psychological trauma endured by these 50 children, 49 youth demonstrated moderate to severe anxiety, and 8 youth attempted suicide or engaged in self-harming behaviors.
Since 2018 there has been an increase in referrals from private counselors and psychologists who have witnessed beneficial results for their clients who completed the H.A.Y. Foundation Horsemanship Lesson Program in conjunction to continuing their private counseling. In 2019, referrals have also been received as a result of a local Judge requesting youth attend an equine program which addresses social/emotional issues. Although the H.A.Y. Foundation works directly with youth experiencing emotional challenges, the positive changes the youth experience have an effect on the relationships with family members, guardians, school personnel and friendships.
In the Fall 2018, the H.A.Y. Foundation applied for and was awarded a $4,550 grant by the Nixa Community Foundation, to provide the opportunity for 10 children in the Nixa area who have endured physical, sexual or emotional trauma, to participate in the Horsemanship Lesson Program in 2019. As of May 1, 2019, we had already filled all 10 of those spots, with more referrals flowing in weekly. In June, the Nixa Community Foundation held an extra grant round with funds through the Rural Ozarks Health Initiative. The H.A.Y. Foundation was awarded an additional $1,365 to provide horsemanship lessons to 3 more children, in the Nixa and Christian County area, who have endured trauma. We are very grateful for the continued support and generosity from the Nixa Community Foundation!
The H.A.Y. Foundation served approximately 100 youth in 2017 and the referrals are already flooding in for 2018. We are able to serve these children thanks to the generosity and support of our community and its members. We sincerely appreciate each and every donor for helping us achieve our mission of improving lives of children in need. Recently, we received individual donations from Sharon Hope King in the amount of $455, Donna Schisler donated $455, Thomas Gale donated $555, and Stoneridge Carpet donated $1,000 in memory of Landon Potts.
On Thanksgiving morning, CrossFit Springfield held their 5k Gone Bird event and participants donated $1100 to benefit the H.A.Y. Foundation in remembrance of Landon Potts. Thank you to Chance & Sherry Potts and the owners of CrossFit Springfield, Grant & Melissa Wistrom and Jeremy & Jenny Mhire for selecting the H.A.Y. Foundation as the benefactor of their philanthropic efforts for the second year in a row. Your support is greatly appreciated!
In November, we were awarded a grant in the amount of $439 from the Finley River Community Foundation. This grant will be used to help purchase boots for students in need. All children participating in the H.A.Y. program are required to wear boots with a heel for safety purposes to keep the child’s foot from sliding forward through the stirrup. Since 2016 the H.A.Y. Foundation has worked with Nixa Hardware to purchase boots at a reduced cost for children in the Horsemanship Lesson Program. Parents/guardians can obtain a certificate from the H.A.Y. Foundation which allows them to purchase boots ‘at cost’ if their child does not own a pair of boots. If the parent/guardian is unable to afford a pair of boots or the child is a ward of the State of Missouri and is unable to obtain a pair of boots, the H.A.Y. Foundation will purchase boots for the child, so he/she may safely participate in the Horsemanship Lesson Program.
In 2017, we noticed an unfortunate trend showing a drastic increase in children who have experienced trauma in their life and wanted to write a grant to help support some of these children in need. The H.A.Y. Foundation was awarded a grant from the Nixa Community Foundation in the amount of $4,550. Thanks to this grant, 10 children in Nixa, who have experienced trauma, will be able to participate in the 8 week Horsemanship Lesson Program in 2018.
All of our donors will receive a thank you letter from a student who has been supported by their donation. Thank you again to all of our donors who help make this program possible!
The HAY Foundation would like to thank PFI Western Store in Springfield MO for the donation of a new saddle! Josh Moore volunteered his time to come to the arena and look at our current saddles to see how they fit each of our horses. He determined the type of saddle that would fit our horses the best and PFI purchased one for the HAY Foundation! The HAY Foundation thanks
Josh for his time and the horses thank PFI for donating a new saddle that will help their backs from getting sore!
Photo - Josh Moore and Casey Creech present a new saddle to the HAY Foundation.
Our horses are the backbone of our program, so we do our best to keep them at optimal health and performance. Last week we had Dr. Kodii Moriuchi, from Healing Hands Veterinary Services, come out to perform chiropractic adjustments on our horses. Our horses are ridden several days of the week by many different children and staff, so it is easy to see how their necks/backs can get out of alignment. When horses are out of alignment, we may see stiffness, changes in their movements, resistance to being saddled or taking the bit, or behavioral changes. Adjustments are made to the horse’s muscular and skeletal system and result in better range of motion, balance, and nervous system function. Our horses showed some immediate signs of relief by lowering their heads, licking and chewing, and taking deep breaths. Sometimes there will be a period of tiredness after an adjustment, usually only lasting 24-48 hours. Our boys were given the weekend off and were ready to work again the following Monday. Their moods have improved and they seem to be moving better already.
Some Tuesday nights at the HAY Foundation are very humbling. Last night was one of these nights for many of the HAY staff and volunteers. The following feedback is from parents….
The HAY Foundation appreciates the community of people who make it possible to work with local children. In addition to the wonderful people who provide monetary donations to cover the cost of staff who work directly with the students, there are many people who donate their time and possessions to benefit the HAY Foundation.
We extend a huge thank you to the following:
A huge thank you to everybody who makes a monetary donation to sponsor children and gives their time, talent, and possessions! These gifts allow the HAY Foundation to work with children in need.
The HAY Foundation was featured in the Community Foundation of the Ozarks Annual Report for 2016. We are extremely thankful for all of the donors who allowed us to help local children last year!
A Wire-to-Wire Fundraising Success
Once you throw a party once, and you hope anyone shows up. You throw a second party, and you hope more people show up than at the first one.
By that metric or any other, the second year of Give Ozarks Day was a success.
The region's only online giving day was started by the CFO in 2015, when nearly $1.1 million was raised for nonprofits in 24 hours. Year two, on May 3, 2016, included nearly 225 agencies from across southern Missouri, which combined to raise nearly $1.2 million.
Additional metrics included:
Nixa-based H.A.Y. (Horses Assisting Youth) Foundation was the top-earning regional agency, with more than $39,000 raised to promote its mission of therapeutic horseback lessons for youth.
H.A.Y. Foundation founder Amy Koenigsfeld said the Give Ozarks success was due to "angel donors" that came through with a lead gift for general operations. It's that sort of opportunity the CFO sought to provide to nonprofits when it launched the giving day concept in the Ozarks.
The second year of Give Ozarks not only featured increased agency activity, but additional investment from the CFO and its partners as well. The CFO again provided $100,000 in endowment matches to 20 agencies. BKD Wealth Advisors again served as Presenting
Sponsor, with Commerce Trust/Coover Foundation, Musgrave Foundation and Ron and Janice Penney repeating as Platinum Sponsors. In all, $100,000 in prizes were awarded to nonprofits online and at the Give Ozarks Homestretch, a happy hour for sponsors and agencies at Missouri Spirits, hosted by Springfield First Community Bank. Online, a new "shopping-cart" feature, developed by site creator and Springfield web design firm Mostly Serious, made it possible for donors to give to multiple agencies in a single transaction.
With two successful years under the belt, you might as well throw another party. And so, the third Give Ozarks Day is scheduled for Tuesday, May 9, 2017 at www.giveozarks.org.
We can't wait to see who shows up this year.
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