Award for magic Jan

Ellenbrook Advocate - - FRONT PAGE - Lau­ren Pe­den

JAN Pavli­novich has seen true magic on her West Swan prop­erty, from non-ver­bal chil­dren call­ing their horse’s name to bril­liant smiles as they swap wheel­chairs for sad­dles.

The Rid­ing for the Dis­abled Swan Val­ley vice-pres­i­dent was named in the Queen’s Birth­day 2017 Hon­ours List this week which recog­nises a range of con­tri­bu­tions and ser­vice across all fields.

Mrs Pavli­novich, who has served as Rid­ing for the Dis­abled WA pres­i­dent, vice-pres­i­dent and sec­re­tary, has been awarded a medal (OAM) in the gen­eral di­vi­sion for her ser­vice to peo­ple with a dis­abil­ity.

The not-for-profit char­ity or­gan­i­sa­tion de­liv­ers a va­ri­ety of horse-re­lated pro­grams to peo­ple with dis­abil­i­ties, spe­cial needs and men­tal health is­sues.

“For a child who is used to be­ing on a walk­ing frame or sit­ting in a wheel­chair, it’s some­thing very new to be up on this magic horse look­ing down on peo­ple and know­ing that they just have to say ‘walk on’ and they can take that horse from A to B,” she said.

“They’ve got some con­trol and that’s beau­ti­ful too.”

But she said it was so much more than a pony ride for the par­tic­i­pants, who are put through all sorts of po­si­tions dur­ing the ses­sions.

“RDA is a very in­tense ther­apy and no-one can do it with­out a re­ally spe­cial team of vol­un­teers, and I be­lieve that I have the best around me. The chil­dren are en­joy­ing them­selves so much that they don’t even re­alise they are hav­ing ther­apy,” Mrs Pavli­novich said.

“We re­ally are a very happy and co­he­sive group and I would like to share this hon­our with them be­cause it’s not just mine, it’s ours. It’s a spe­cial place to be and it re­ally gets into your heart.”

The Ed­ward Street cen­tre, op­er­at­ing from Mrs Pavli­novich’s his­tor­i­cal prop­erty St Leonard’s, of­fers hip­pother­apy, dres­sage and vault­ing.

She said it was wonderful watch­ing the chil­dren progress.

“When a child comes here it’s not un­usual for them not to be able to sit up and we just lay them across a sheep skin and then grad­u­ally they sit up, we work on that,” she said.

“We get the kids when they’re re­laxed and happy and they’re feel­ing good and they’ll do any­thing to stay on that horse.”

Pic­ture: Bruce Hunt d470161

Jan­ice Pavli­novich and Mor­gan De Prazer (4) on Doc.

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