Surf & Turf Therapy, a nonprofit organization that aims to improve the quality of life of those with disabilities through non-conventional therapeutic activities, has launched a donation drive to help the organization extend its services to more people.
The nonprofit led by Jillian Stewart, a licensed physical therapist, veteran equestrian and surfer, provides surfing and horseback riding activities as a form of treatment for children and adults with mental and physical disabilities. That includes those associated with neurological and developmental disorders, such as autism and Down syndrome, as well as those linked to other conditions, including spinal cord or brain injury, and multiple sclerosis (MS).
The activities are open to disabled people of all ages, ranging now from 18 months up to 84 years. Their family members and loved ones also are welcomed to participate in treatment sessions to provide additional support.
This year, Surf & Turf provided more than $18,000 in pro bono (free) services, and lent its services to 60 disabled patients and their families.
Since the start of the year until now, the nonprofit provided a total of 1,939 activity hours, counting more than 40 volunteers who devoted nearly 100 hours per week to its cause.
Surf & Turf also has two doctors of physical therapy, two speech and language pathologists, two occupational therapists, and one instructor for sibling sessions to help carry out its activities.
This fundraising campaign was launched in response to the number of service requests that have nearly doubled since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the organization, during the pandemic Surf & Turf was providing its services 45 hours per week. Of those, 28 hours were dedicated to horseback riding activities, and the remaining 17 hours to surfing activities.
Surf & Turf wants to raise $56,200 in donations, which will be used to purchase a new van to transport equipment required for surfing and horseback riding activities ($35,000), to subsidize vehicle insurance for one year ($1,200), and to support other pro bono services ($20,000).
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