Author: Admin@card

Important Update Spring 2021 Program (May 4/21)

May 4, 2021

Dear CARD Community,

It is with heavy hearts, that we at CARD have decided to cancel the Spring 2021 term. We had high hopes    of being able to run at least a partial term however, due to the extension of the Stay at Home order and the continued uncertainty regarding when restrictions might lift, it is no longer a feasible option and has been cancelled.

We miss you all, and hope that we will be able to saddle up soon and resume programming once it is safe and restrictions are lifted.

Please stay safe!

The Staff at CARD


Message from our Board Chair

Dear CARD Community:

 I hope everyone is keeping well. During this most challenging of years, we have realized more than ever before the importance of having such an incredible group of supporters. I wanted to take a moment to thank you on behalf of my fellow Board members and the CARD staff.

  •  To our volunteers: you demonstrated such dedication returning to the arena during our fall session in support of our riders. Our classes went off without a hitch as everyone adapted seamlessly to our new health and safety protocols. We know we will continue to be in great shape when we are once again able to resume classes, so thank you!
  •  To our donors: we are humbled by the outpouring of support that we’ve received during the past year. Your commitment to helping us fulfill our mission is truly something special. We look forward to welcoming you back to the barn once it is safe for us to gather. Thank you!
  •  To our riders: your passion for CARD and love of our horses inspire all of us and leave us optimistic about the future. We can’t wait to see you again!

As we eagerly await the resumption of our programming, we wanted to share a brief update on what’s been going on behind the scenes.

Operations Update:

It goes without saying that the past 12 months have been unlike any stretch of time CARD has seen in its 50+ years. While we are excited to resume operations and get everyone back onto the horse as soon as it is safe to do so, we acknowledge that it will be a while until we are truly back to normal. We are in regular contact with the health authorities and with other therapy riding facilities to make sure that we are developing and maintaining best practices to ensure a safe reopening for all riders, volunteers and staff.

 We will continue to provide regular updates regarding the status of your programs and any further modifications that will be required to adhere to our safety guidelines. We thank you for your patience and understanding as we navigate the ever-changing environment in which we’re currently operating.

 In the meantime, you can rest assured that our herd is very well taken care of. Thanks to Seana, Scot, our amazing barn staff and our dedicated horse trainers, our horses are healthy, well-fed and well-exercised. At the same time, we know they’re missing their other human companions and are excited to get back to work!

Strategy Update:

The Board has been working closely with Elaine and the staff over the past few months on a number of exciting initiatives. We’re taking advantage of some of the downtime that has been forced upon us to improve our internal processes and to set strategic objectives that will help us continue to be successful long into the future. We look forward to sharing updates with you about new opportunities that we see to benefit the community while continuing to provide all our clients with best-in-class programming.



Leadership Team Changes:

Lynsey, Alex and I are very excited to welcome three talented new members to CARD’s Board, all of whom joined us last October: 

·         Arianna Shour is CARD’s newly appointed Treasurer. She is a Chartered Professional Accountant who brings a strong finance background and experience in the healthcare sector to the Board.

·         Patricia Agostini worked for many years as head of Human Resources for a large Canadian nonprofit organization. This experience, along with her passion for horses, are real assets to the organization.

·         Natasha Mwenda‘s work in strategic and human capital consulting, in addition to her prior experience serving on the boards of educational institutions in Australia, will be of great value to CARD.

 We also wanted to take a moment to thank two members of the CARD Board whose terms recently expired and whose contributions to our organization are immeasurable:

  •  Joe Ferrari, our outgoing Chair, served on CARD’s Board for more than ten years, many of those in an executive position. Joe was instrumental in keeping the ship steady at the onset of the COVID-induced shutdown and positioning CARD for long-term success. His contributions are a major reason why the organization is in such strong shape today.
  • Don Buckley has been one of CARD’s most loyal supporters for years. He served as a member of the Board for over ten years, including as the Chair and more recently on the 50th Anniversary Committee and the Finance Committee. Don will be missed on the Board, but we look forward to continuing to see him around CARD.

We’re also very excited to welcome Janet Cann as our new Fundraising Manager. Janet will be starting her employment at CARD later this month and we’re looking forward to introducing her to you. Please also join us in thanking Bonnie Hartley for her many years of service. Bonnie has recently taken on a new position, and we wish her all the best in that new opportunity.

 Personal Message

Finally, I wanted to express how grateful I am for the opportunity to serve CARD as Chair. Many of you will know my wife Julia, a volunteer instructor at CARD since she was in high school. As a result of her many years at CARD, I’ve had opportunities to witness firsthand the amazing impact that CARD has on all who are connected to the organization, and this will no doubt help inform my approach to this role. I’m excited about all that we have planned for CARD and am looking forward to seeing what the future holds.

We look forward to welcoming you back to CARD soon. In the meantime, please stay safe and healthy. Do not hesitate to reach out if you have any comments, questions, or feedback.

 Mark Greenberg,

Chair of the Board



Operational Guidelines for Reopening 2021


Hello Volunteer and Riders:

By now you should all have received your registration package for our modified fall program.

While we are very excited to welcome you back to CARD, we wanted to ask you to please take the time to review our modified operating procedures since it is not yet business as usual. Safety is our first concern and our top priority for you, the riders, and staff. Outlined below are the key procedures that have been put in place to keep everyone safe and well while we navigate through Covid-19.


  • All persons entering the CARD facility will be required to complete a health questionnaire before each visit.
  • Contact information will be collected each week for all persons entering the facility, (including riders, volunteers, and guests), to assist with contact tracing, should that become necessary.
  • The lounge is set up for physically distanced seating, and people will need to abide by this set up. Chairs cannot be moved around at this time.
  • There are numerous hand sanitizing stations set-up throughout the facility.
  • Washrooms are outfitted with sanitizer and will be fully sanitized after each session.
  • The kitchen, deck and offices will be off-limits to everyone except staff members.
  • No food or drink will be permitted in the lounge.
    • We kindly ask that anyone requiring food or drink while at CARD step outside for this so that masking guidelines are maintained.
    • This request also extends to individuals who must remove their mask to make/take a phone call.
  • The front door will be locked at all times to ensure we do not have strangers from the park in our facility and to ensure that protocols regarding arrival times and guest limits are adhered to.

In-Class Protocol

  • Each class will have a designated person that will monitor the front door, sign in volunteers, ensure that protocols regarding arrivals/departures and guests are adhered to, gather records from the individual Covid-19 health questionnaires, and sanitize the area once done.
  • There will be only 2 people in the barn tacking up, the rest will set up the arena.
    • In between classes, all reins will be sanitized.
  • Class props will be restricted to pylons, poles, etc.; there will be no item transfer activities
    • Clients may only be accompanied by only one person; siblings, friends and additional family members cannot be accommodated at this time.
    • Clients may arrive a maximum of 10 minutes before their class time and must leave immediately after dismounting.
    • Clients are encouraged to purchase their own riding helmet to minimize shared equipment. If a rider requires a CARD helmet, it will be sanitized immediately after use.
  • Volunteer PPE Requirements
    • Volunteers must always wear gloves and a mask while in the common areas (including the lounge, washrooms, arena, and barn).
      • Barrier-type gloves are preferred (e.g. fabric gloves with rubberized palms/fingers such as gardening gloves).
      • The mask must cover the volunteer’s nose, mouth, and chin.
    • We ask that volunteers bring their own gloves and masks that adhere to the above protocols. If you forget your gloves and/or a mask, we will supply you with them for that day, and you must wear them while in the facility.
    • Volunteers and staff will sanitize their hands before interacting with a new client.
  • Client PPE Requirements
    • All clients will be required to wear a mask that covers their nose, mouth, and chin while in the facility and while riding.
    • It is preferred that clients wear a barrier-type glove if possible (e.g. fabric gloves with rubberized palms/fingers such as gardening gloves).
      • If wearing gloves is not possible, clients will be required to sanitize their hands before and after mounting.

Other Considerations

  • We ask that if you are dropped off by a friend/family member, that the person who does so leaves the facility and returns to pick you up at a designated time. We cannot accommodate extra people in the lounge at this time.
  • Some class times will be amended to allow time to sanitize surfaces/hands between classes. These amendments will be communicated to all individuals who will be affected by the changes.

A note regarding our riders: the first riders to return will be our most independent clients, those who need little to no physical support from volunteers.

We are hoping that with some patience and understanding we can stand together and keep CARD strong!  These guidelines will help us navigate through the early stages of reopening.  If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact myself or Judy Wanless.

Looking forward to seeing you all again!

Warm regards,

Elaine Brooks, Interim Executive Director

Community Association for Riders with Disabilities

4777 Dufferin Street, Toronto, ON M3H 5T3

B: 416-667-8600    F: 416-739-7520

Help The Herd-A staff challenge

A staff challenge in response to COVID 19
Chuck’s Staff Challenge…. Help the Horses!!!
Due to the suspension of activities the CARD horses are enjoying an extra long break, but they would much rather be working!
CARD depends on the much needed revenue streaming in from classes, fundraising and events. Unlike many businesses we cannot just shut the doors and take a pause.
We have 14 mouths to feed and keep in shape so that when our classes are up and running again, our horses can be in the best shape possible. During this crisis their needs are great.
Please join our staff members in their quest to provide the CARD horses with some of those basic needs. Over the last couple of weeks campaign appeals have gone out to Help the Herd with hay, veterinarian costs, farrier fees, supplements and treats, grain, and shavings.
You can make a difference. The CARD horses need your support more than ever!
There are two ways you can help. Go to should you wish to make a pledge over the phone or by e-transfer. Or Go to Canada Helps by clicking the link below:

Thank you to Susan Hay and Global TV for Helping The Herd!  See CARD on Global TV News:

See the story!

Thank you to those who contributed and continue to contribute to our horses:

“All the best to you and your volunteers! Who can say no to the horses who do so much”

“Sending thanks to everyone at CARD for all that you do and a special virtual treat for all of the magnificent horses who we miss very much!”

“Thank you for all that you do !! I know that my sister, Kath(run) took riding lessons and participated in the Mini Royals back in the 80s… Thank you for continuing this incredible program !! ”


Thank you 50th Gala supporters!



On July 17th, CARD celebrated 50 years of therapeutic riding services with a sold out Anniversary gala at Woodbine Racetrack.   Guests were greeted with a champagne reception and then escorted up to the Northern Dancer room for a delicious buffet dinner.  The room was complete with a balcony where avid race fans were thrilled to watch the races and enjoy the late afternoon summer breeze. Visual moments from CARD’s past, were highlighted in a photo presentation.                                                                                                                                                                                                    

After previewing the latest CARD video, various members of the board  including our new board chair Joseph Ferrari and Don Buckley, Gala sponsor shared some special moments in CARD’s history.  Long time friends of CARD and sponsors, the IODE were on hand to speak to the 150 guests and presented a cheque to Executive Director, Chuck Wright.  Also in attendance were long time supporters Jim Elder and Sandy Hawley.  Karen Stintz from Variety Village and Michael Levitt M.P. York Central were also in attendance.  Michael brought special wishes from Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau.

The evening was capped off with a silent auction, featuring equine art from the talented artist, Ann Clifford, as well as goodies and information from our friends at Omega Alpha.

All in all it was a memorable time for all who attended.

Thank you to the following supporters:

  • Adena Springs North
  • Benjamin’s Park Memorial Chapel
  • The Buckley Family
  • Centennial College Alumni Association
  • Diana Dunlap
  • Draglam Waste
  • Frank H. Hori Charitable Foundation
  • IODE
  • Kathy Worth, RBC
  • Len Goldberg
  • Sam-Son Farm
  • Uxbridge Horsemen’s Association
  • Woodbine Entertainment

Goodie Bag Donors:

  • Egg Farmers of Ontario
  • ITG
  • Kernels
  • Omega Alpha

Flowers sponsored by:

Ital Florists Limited

Art Pieces by:

Ann Clifford


Click on the thumbnails to view some Gala highlights!

Mini Royal 2019-A Fun Fundraiser!

Join Us For The Mini Royal – A FUNdraiser for CARD-  Sunday June 9th, 2019

10:00 – 3:00 pm

Proudly Sponsored by:

Judith Love


  What is Mini Royal?

  • An in-house horse show hosted by The Community Association for Riders with Disabilities (CARD)
  • It is open to all CARD riders
  • It consists of a variety of mounted games and /or riding skills so riders can demonstrate to family/friends/donors what they have been working on in class
  • Participants are invited to a lunch BBQ! There is also a plant sale/bake sale.
  • 30 Riders spaces available-are you going to be one?  Bring your family and friends and show them what you have accomplished!

Does it cost to participate and if so, how much?

We have a suggested fundraising goal of $100.

  • Last year’s pledge totals were reviewed and the average amount each person collected was $100 or more!  Every dollar counts -we need your help!
  • Pledges (donations) over $25 will receive a tax receipt
  • CARD has turned 50-lets get us to $50,000 and keep our programs thriving.

Why we ask for your Financial Assistance

Something to keep in mind……..

  • It costs approximately $9,500.00 a year for the care of just ONE HORSE
  • How important is your support?
  • Last year $50,000 was raised at this event and pledges totaled 50% of this goal


Click Here for Rider Registration Form

Click Here for Pledge Form

Click Here for Volunteer Registration Form

Click Here for Sponsorship Opportunities

Click Here for Sponsorship Information

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Administration at CARD