Willa is our two-and-a-half-year-old little girl born with spina bifida and hydrocephalus. She had her spine repaired at just eleven hours old and had four brain surgeries within the first three months of her life. While life for Willa did not start off easy, she continues daily to knock down her barriers with joy and ambition, setting ablaze any obstacle in her way.
Jared and I were told Willa would be paralyzed from the waist down, but a testament to her ambition would prove otherwise. Willa started walking with a walker in May 2023. She is a social butterfly who loves all things Disney, pink and purple, and her older brother, Langston. To know her is to love her and we are so thankful we get front row seats to the miracle that she is.
As parents, all you want is for your child to have their independence and that is why finding the right therapies is so crucial to Willa’s development.
We started researching for therapies that would be beneficial for Willa, and we found Hippotherapy at Quantum Leap Farm. Hippotherapy is practiced by a certified and licensed Physical Therapist, Occupational Therapist and/or Speech Language Pathologist. It uses the horse’s movement to strengthen core, balance and focus and support the systems that impact speech, language, social communication, cognition and swallowing. We were very hopeful that this form of therapy would help with her barriers in communication and postural control. Since starting at Quantum Leap, Willa has gained increased trunk stability, increased physical endurance, more confidence in navigating sensory challenges, and new vocabulary skills.
The speech skills she has gained with her therapist Lisa have helped her tremendously to be able to communicate effectively with how she is feeling, while also being able to comprehend better everyday conversation through the use of functional nouns and verbs.
We cannot thank the Quantum Leap Farm team enough for contributing toward Willa’s success at such a young age!
Over 90% of Quantum Leap’s income is dependent on the generosity of donors. We hope that you will consider a gift to Quantum Leap Farm this holiday season. Willa, along with so many others, would not be able to participate in these equine-assisted therapies without your support.
Thank you for making these opportunities possible, it has truly made such an impact in our lives and Willa’s future independence. We are so grateful that you have helped her climb mountains, knock down barriers, and reach milestones!
When you choose to give to our Scholarship Fund you AND a scholarship recipient will receive
a Quantum Leap Farm – 2024 Calendar.
For more information about giving to Quantum, please contact our Development Director: Emily Westfall | Emily@QuantumLeapFarm.org | 813-920-9250 ext. 206
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