Home Depot grant benefits Freedom Reins Ranch in Pahrump

The Pahrump Valley is well-known as a horse community and the love for these intelligent creatures is a common theme among the populous.

For one local family, their horses are much more than simple family pets however, they are working animals that can bring enormous benefits to the humans who interact with them.

Freedom Reins Ranch, founded by the Schmidt family, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of others through horsemanship lessons as well as equine-assisted physical therapy and psychotherapy.

With the assistance of their equine friends, the members of Freedom Reins Ranch are able to provide a boosted sense of self-confidence, trust and self-awareness while building the character of their clients.

Participants in the ranch’s programs also benefit from the bodily aspect and those in need of physical therapy often find their experience helps build core strength and improve overall physical function. Clients learn about the proper care of horses as well, along with basic riding skills and proper tack maintenance, all important facets of horsemanship.

As a nonprofit, Freedom Reins Ranch relies heavily on community support and recently, the group saw a big lift with a sizable grant from the Home Depot Foundation, the charitable branch of the popular home improvement store.

Freedom Reins Ranch co-founder Julie Schmidt said she was absolutely delighted to receive the $5,000 grant, which brought building materials and Home Depot store staffers from both Pahrump and the Las Vegas Valley to the ranch for a day of labor in the name of a good cause.

Schmidt detailed that the workers helped create a safer and more workable environment for horses and humans alike. Home Depot crews applied a non-skid paint to the wheelchair ramp that allows disabled individuals to more easily mount and constructed shade structures for the horses themselves.

A new round pen was erected too, creating more space for the ranch’s activities.

The group also added touches of visual improvement, beautifying the ranch with new paint and even building a stone and wood bench so observers can recline in comfort. To cap off the effort, Home Depot donated wheelbarrows and tools for the ranch as well.

“They have been a huge supporter of Freedom Reins Ranch,” Schmidt said, expressing enormous gratitude for all that was done. However, the work on a ranch is never truly at an end and Freedom Reins is always looking for ways to bolster their programs.

“We definitely could use donations to help with the cost of running the ranch. People can either sponsor a horse per month or sponsor an event,” Schmidt said of methods residents could utilize to assist the ranch. Bringing in various other organizations and groups is also something Freedom Reins is continuously pursuing, with Schmidt noting, “I would love to have groups out for an afternoon of fun such as our veterans, foster families, etc. Anyone interested can contact me through Facebook or call me at 775-513-3790.”

Contact reporter Robin Hebrock at rhebrock@pvtimes.com

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