Benji leads Magic into the Ocala Mayor’s office to receive a special
presentation for making a difference in the Ocala community
What a spectacular weekend this was in Ocala, Florida. Wall-to-wall events and media interviews all focused on fund-raising for the Gentle Carousel Therapy Miniature Horses and bringing a bit of happiness into the lives of hospitalized children and senior citizens. Gentle Carousel is a non-profit organization lead by Debbie and Jorge Garcia-Bengochea, two of the most caring, selfless individuals I’ve ever met. Their miniature horses visit kids in children’s hospitals and the elderly and infirm in nursing homes and hospice. Usually walking right into their rooms. You should see the eyes light up. I was intimidated. Having a movie star dog visit you in your room is one thing. Having a horse visit you in your room is quite something else. But there’s more. Twenty-one elementary schools have now signed up for Gentle Carousel’s very special Reading is Magic program which is raising literacy levels in grades one through six all across central Florida using classroom meetings with their miniature horses as motivation to read.
Until now, most of the costs of these programs have come out of the couple’s own pockets. So Benji was delighted to help with the organization’s first annual fund raising weekend.
Above and below: Benji greets children at the
Ronald MacDonald House in Gainesville.
See a recap of the receptions, gala dinner, and the entire weekend on the Gentle Carousel Therapy Miniature Horses website, or just read more about the work they do: http://www.horse-therapy.org/Horses%20At%20The%20Harn.htm
Benji meets Rainbow
Kathleen Meets Magic
Joe and Benji sign books and DVDs for hundreds of fans at
Barnes & Noble. A portion of every sale went to benefit the programs
of the Gentle Carousel Therapy Miniature Horses.