Association for equine assisted therapy “Pegaz” Rijeka:
- founded in 2001
- initiated first organized form of equine assisted therapy in city area of Rijeka and the Primorje-Gorski Kotar County
- Member of the the Croatian Equestrian Federation
- Promotes and develops cooperation with institutions and organizations from Kvarner County providing education and rehabilitation of children and persons with disabilities
- Organized first regional competition in skills on horseback for the disabled PGC – 2006.
- Organized the first international seminar on therapy using horses in Croatia, June 2008.
- Organized several expert meetings and workshops on the topic of therapy by using horses (public forums, lectures, professional meetings)
- Carried out collaborative projects with similar associations and organizations at national and international level
The grounds and facilities are located just 5 km from the Rijeka’s centre and are designed as a combination of therapy, recreation, sport and active leisure time. By 2016 the space has been adjusted for receiving various user groups and was divided into several parts:
– Public spaces with toilet (social room with mini-kitchen, stove, refrigerator, shower and toilet (M/F) and wardrobe)
-The orchard with greenhouse for gardening, garden paths, children’s playground and a green area for social activities.
-Accommodation units -3 bungalows for multi-day camps with a total of 15 beds. Common spaces and accommodation units are adapted for wheelchair users.
– Equestrian arena with quartz sand, measuring 30mx70m
-Accommodation facility and pastures for therapeutic and sport horses
The Association promotes ecological and renewable energy use and operates in compliance with environmental regulations and measures:
-Own on-site production of electricity – solar power equipment on the facilities
-Appropriate disposal of manure and waste
-Using the creek on the association’s grounds and rainwater for watering flowers and vegetable garden
-“Eco-island” is set up on the grounds with differentiated waste containers for sorting waste (plastic, glass, paper). Maintenance and restoration of orchards with chemically untreated fruit (apples, pears, apricots, plums, figs).
EQUINE ASISSTED THERAPY (EAT)
Within the process of EAT each individual user gets specifically written work program with clearly defined therapeutic goals, descriptions of selected methods, procedures and use of equipment and didactic materials, as well as guided analysis evaluation of therapeutic procedures.
EAT is performed by experts whose basic training profile is as follows: education teachers, educational and rehabilitation experts, social pedagogues, psychologists, teachers, educators, occupational therapists, physical therapists, social workers, doctors and other health professionals who have completed additional training from EAT and equestrian (specialization).
During 2014, we detected a need to expand regular activities of the Association by adding the recreational and quality leisure activities for different groups of members and users of recreational program, to its core activities – EAT. Recreational program of the Association is primarily intended for members of the Association without disabilities. Since 2015 the Association is a regular member of the Croatian Equestrian Federation and is the only active organization in the city of Rijeka, which provides its membership conditions and opportunities for recreation and amateur equestrian sport. The program of recreation and amateur sport takes place in the pre-agreed terms, under the expert guidance of trained personnel and with safety riding equipment.
The Association cooperates with kindergartens and primary schools in the organization of half-day excursions for children with the goal of introducing preschool and primary school children with farm animals, activities on the farm and it encourages children to spend time outdoors in nature. For the participants of half-day excursion it is possible to arrange riding, horse grooming, walks on the nearby walking paths, group games in the open.
CAMPS AND LEASURE
The Association has 3 units or a total of 15 beds for the accommodation of different groups of users – domestic and international. The Association has, so far, successfully organized multi-day camps for groups of users with disabilities from Slovenia and summer camps for volunteers from various parts of Croatia.
Facilities of the Association are equipped for organizing various gatherings – meetings of members and friends, etc. The Association has a children’s playground with swings, seesaws, climbing frames and slides for play and socialize and a space for group games.
Since its foundation the Association “Pegaz” has been implementing, promoting and developing volunteer work of citizens of different age groups – members of the Association. During the 15-year- span of the Association and HR program, volunteer program has been gradually adapted to the current needs of the organization, moreover, it has been included in the strategic and operational planning of the Association as one of the main “engine” behind all programs and facilities that the Association offers. Volunteer Program of the Association “Pegaz” is implemented in accordance with the Law on Volunteering . Following the Decision of the Agency for Mobility and EU programs from August 8th 2016, the Association “Pegaz” has become an accredited organization within the European Voluntary Service (EVS). The Association “Pegaz” has earned three-year accreditation for receiving volunteers from abroad, sending volunteers to foreign countries and became the coordinator of EVS programs. Activities of the EVS networks in Croatia are carried out by the Erasmus + program.