Testimonials: Organizations

Burbank BGC and Hollywood Urban Project
Left: Burbank Boys & Girls Club (2003 – Present); Right: Hollywood Urban Project (2001 - 2002)

Variety BGC
Variety Boys & Girls Club (2004 – Present)

  • “I loved that our members conquered their fears. When the day began, our members were afraid, hesitant and not confident at all. As the day went on, their confidence built. The activities and interactions with Dusty helped them get ready for the trail ride. Then while on the ride, everyone had fun and the jitters they had was all out of the way. I really enjoyed that.” – Rick Hernandez, Unit Director of Variety Boys & Girls Club, Pueblo Del Sol Unit

West San Gabriel Valley BGC
West San Gabriel Valley Boys & Girls Club (2005 – Present)

  • “Dusty was so patient, relaxed and allowed our members to take care of him. Truly the best was our members had the opportunity to learn and have fun at the same time. This experience, I believe, they will cherish and they will never forget. Thanks to Sarah, her program has demonstrated to our members the love and passion she has for horses, and she is willing to share that with our members. People need to believe in programs such as Dusty’s Riders so that our youth can appreciate the love for animals and especially horses!” – Jesse Amezquita, Director of Sports & Recreations, West San Gabriel Valley Boys & Girls Club

  • “I loved sharing a new experience with a diverse group of students & adults. However, the most rewarding part of this experience was seeing the smiles & compassion of the kids as they learned about horses & rode on them. The reason I volunteered to bring these kids on this trip was not only because I’ve never rode a horse myself, but because I know a lot of the kids we serve at the Boys & Girls Club may never have been exposed to this type of fun due their parents’ income. In addition, it was an honor meeting such a passionate, positive, outgoing and giving individual as Sarah. Thank you for the experience and your service to our community and others. The world needs more people like you! Happy 10th Anniversary, Dusty’s Riders! God bless! Hope to see you again, soon!” – Alfred Mendoza, WSGV Boys & Girls Club Staff

Willowbrook BGC
Watts-Willowbrook Boys & Girls Club (2007 – Present)

  • “This is my 2nd time being around horses & my 1st time meeting Dusty. He’s the perfect horse & he’s so great with the children. He made them all so comfortable & unafraid. . . even the new comers that thought they were gonna be scared. This was a great trip. All the kids made it back safely with big smiles on their faces. Thank you so much, Dusty & Sarah, for this great experience.” – Shay Martin, Watts-Willowbrook Boys & Girls Club Counselor

  • “Today was a very exciting day for my daughter. I was so proud of her being so brave and not scared at all. It was amazing watching her learn and listen to all the things that are so important to know about horses. This was a very good idea to take kids and teach them all about how horses live, eat and train.” – Latia Martin, Mother of Participant from Watts-Willowbrook Boys & Girls Club, Pueblo Del Sol Unit

San Fernando Valley BGC and Pasadena BGC
Left: San Fernando Valley Boys & Girls Club (2012 – Present); Right: Pasadena Boys & Girls Club (2013 – 2015)

  • “I loved seeing the teens enjoy and experience the ride! For some of these youths, today was the first time they got on a horse. I’m really grateful for this opportunity. The laughs, smiles, thrills and excitement we shared today are really something to remember. Thank you for taking us on such a memorable ride!.” – Alfred Mendoza, Counselor, Pasadena Boys & Girls Club

Venice BGC and East Valley BGC
Left: Venice Boys & Girls Club (2013 – 2015); Right: East Valley Boys & Girls Club (2015 – Present)

Ramona Gardens BGC and Helpline Youth Counseling
Left: Ramona Gardens Boys & Girls Club (2016); Right: Helpline Youth Counseling (2010 – Present)

  • “What I liked best was bringing the girls to Dusty’s Riders and watching them enjoy the day. Their interaction with Dusty was exciting. Although they didn’t express their excitement, they shared it with me. They enjoyed brushing, walking and feeding him. I enjoyed it, too. It was exciting being able to share this first experience with the girls. Neither had ever rode or been around a horse. They said it was so much fun that they wish they could have went longer. They do plan on going horseback riding on their own and all because they had a good experience today. I always have a great time with Dusty, Sarah and my girls.” – Julie Ayala, Helpline Counselor

  • “I loved the experience my three children had riding the horses, knowing Dusty and actually touching the horse. The happy positive memories this day has made an impact in our lives. I love this experience and I want to thank you with all of my heart. I had a wonderful time being outside and seeing all the beautiful horses. Again, I thank you and what you are doing is positive for families that have gone through a negative past.” – Martha Ruiz, Mother, Helpline

  • “It’s hard just to pick just one part of the day today that I liked. This is my second time with my family out with Dusty, and it’s been so great, wonderful, fun-filled and just plain awesome. I would really like to thank Dusty’s Riders for the kindness and time that they take out of their day to spend with my family and other families to have the opportunity to enjoy the day with my family and the horses.” – Valerie Navarro, Mother, Helpline

  • “I loved watching the kids’ faces light up when they touched Dusty!” – Jamie, Counselor, Helpline

The Dream Center
The Dream Center (2010 – Present)

  • “Thank you for allowing the Dream Center Academy the opportunity to participate in this fun activity. Many of these kids wouldn’t normally get a chance to experience nature in this way. Bringing city kids back into nature truly changes their perceptive of life. The communities and neighborhoods that many of these children are from do not allow for them to branch out and experience a lot of fun activities. Their parents spend hours working to provide for their children, but activities like horseback riding are privileges. Thank you for allowing them to expand their horizons.” – Ms. Helen, Counselor, Dream Center Academy

  • “We had Bill Pickins out today... His name is Sean Johnson. It was awesome to see him be a brave man and get on a horse. Amongst the crew was a bunch of really cool guys who learning to have fun being sober! This, of course, is a process and a challenge, and it’s nice to see genuine smiles because of genuine sober fun!! Thanks, Sarah & Dusty!!.” – Rachelle Meents, DCTD Staff

  • “Today was an exciting day for each level of rider. They started out the day with a welcoming spirit. Each student had the opportunity to take responsibility, control and care of the horses. Though some were shy & timid, they “cowboyed up” and had the boldness inside pulled out. Even the most apathetic students were smiling and laughing at the end of the ride. As well, the inner city kids were humbled by the horse’s stature. Most of the students have not experienced the outdoors or have close contact with animals. Dusty’s Riders made the experience not only safe and exciting, but they are well experienced and have hearts of sharing their love and knowledge of animals with others.” – Shawn Ryan, DCTD Staff

I Have a Dream Foundation, LA Watts
"I Have a Dream" Foundation LA – Watts (2015 – Present)

"I Have a Dream" Foundation LA – Inglewood (2015 – Present)

Vaughn Next Century Learning Center (2016)

Vista Charter Middle School
Vista Charter Middle School (2012 – 2015)

  • “The experience was almost spiritual. Being able to spend time with such a good soul, Dusty, before our ride really took this experience to another level. They (we) will all certainly never forget this experience. I really like how we got to feed the animals, walk Dusty and get to know all his body parts. Learning a little bit about how to take care of such a great, big, giant horse was a really cool experience. But I think the best part was to be able to bring these kids here. Lives were changed today! Thank you.” – Alberto Ramirez, Principal, Vista Charter Middle School

  • “I accompanied my sixth graders today. We all had such an amazing time meeting, grooming and learning about Dusty as well as getting the opportunity to take the trail ride. I learned that it really is my demeanor and self-control that puts the horse at ease. A lesson I can learn for the classroom! Thank you, Sarah!.” – Dianna Park, 6th grade teacher, Vista Charter Middle School

  • “What I liked best was spending quality time with my students and seeing the smiles on their faces. Meeting Dusty and Sarah was a true pleasure. They are a great team and have made a positive impact on my students. Thank you so much for inviting us.” – Maggie Rochin, 6th grade teacher, Vista Charter Middle School

Living Proof Ministries & Dubnoff Valley Group Home
Living Proof Ministries (2011 – 2012); Right: Dubnoff Valley Group Home (2011)

LAPD PALS (2009 – 2010)