Who we are


Kent Special Riding Program is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing high quality therapeutic and recreational horseback riding instruction to physically, mentally, and emotionally challenged individuals in Kent and surrounding counties.  KSRP strives to maximize the potential of all individuals involved in the program in a safe and stimulating environment.

KSRP is big smiles and pride in a job well done. It is the look on the face of a student able to ride a horse without help for the first time. It’s the joy of a challenged child or adult who depends on crutches or a wheelchair for everyday mobility as they trot around an arena or ride on the trails without needing either one. It is the glow in the heart of a volunteer that comes from a hug, a gentle touch, or the expression of sincere thanks spoken by the eyes of a student. KSRP is something special to all of our riders and volunteers. We all are lifted by the experience. We also could very much use your help. KSRP, a nonprofit, volunteer reliant program has made this special experience available to well in excess of 9,000 student participants since we started in 1976. For each of three sessions during the year, we are able to accommodate up to 125 students. The problem and the hurt come from having to turn almost as many away. Time is the invaluable contribution of our small but dedicated group of volunteers. Although KSRP employs trained instructors and aides to oversee the program, volunteers make the difference. They will typically act as horse leaders and sidewalkers to help with balance for the student. But more importantly, they bring care, concern, enthusiasm and love to the experience for our riders. Program volunteers are asked to work for two hours, once a week, during a six-week session. Daytime, evening, weekday and Saturday classes are available. Like all self-funded community service organizations, money is our other critical need. Funds are needed to cover food and care of our horses, student equipment, salaries, insurance and supplies.

While the fund-raising and events that our volunteers support keep our program operating today, we need your help in order to expand access for those students that currently have no place. We offer the following sponsorships:

  • Sponsor one rider for 6 weeks
  • Sponsor one rider for a year
  • Sponsor a class for 6 weeks
  • Sponsor a horse for a year

KSRP is licensed with the State of Michigan as a 501 (c) (3) charity. Your gift, therefore, is fully tax deductible.

For more information about our program, volunteer opportunities, or financial assistance contributions, please contact:

Program Coordinator: Melinda Pepper (616) 632-7888  pepperm3@anr.msu.edu

Volunteer Coordinator: Angela (616) 633-3616  ksrp.dreams@gmail.com
Thank you for your attention, interest and future support in helping us help our students to “sit tall in the saddle.”

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