Celebrating the transformative power of equine therapy, Bina Farm Center held its annual gala to benefit scholarships for participants and to help care for the therapy horses.
Held at the Ritz Carlton, Boston Common, the evening raised over $300,000 for programming, which includes children and adults with special needs and veterans..
Carly Simon, her son Ben Taylor and his fiancee British artist Sophie Hiller surprised the crowd with performances with two Teen Ambassador Program (TAP) leaders, Lillian Ellmore, who has cerebral palsy, and Paris Nobles, daughter of child advocate and philanthropist Mahsa Noble. Shamus, a gray Shetland pony at BINA, also make a star appearance during game show (fundraising) portion of the night.
Joyce Kulhawik performed master of ceremony duties while Jonathan Soroff serves as “master of fun” with guests playing classic TV game shows (Name That Tune, The Price is Right). Teen leaders in BINA’s TAP helped plan the gala, contributing to its success by hosting, presenting, and performing.
“The TAP leaders are the next generation of hands-on philanthropy, and a key component of BINA’s success,” says Coryn Bina, co-founder of BINA Farm. “These 15 teens, who are differently abled,embody one of our most important values: that inclusivity is essential to social change.”
BINA, which runs programs in Lexington, Wellesley, and Natick, serves 90 weekly riders, who have a range of disabilities (autism, Down Syndrome, vision/hearing impairment, epilepsy and other special needs). Additionally, many participants take part in non-mounted equine therapies and BINA’s vocational program. Its executive team doesn’t take a salary. BINA Farm Center brings together individuals with and without special needs by offering a variety of inclusive enrichment programs that help them to both thrive personally and make their best contribution towards the communities in which they live. BINA provides a comprehensive therapeutic and recreational environment utilizing Equine-Assisted Activities and Therapies, Vocational Training Programs and Creative and Complementary Therapies for children and adults with physical, developmental and emotional challenges. For more information, visit binafarm.org.