PERSONAL PONIES began with the dream of our founder, Marianne Alexander (and just two ponies) to do something special for special children. As a breeder of Connemara Ponies and Irish Sport Horses, for more than 3 decades, she wanted to give something back. She discovered the incredible sensitivity of the UK Shetland Pony to children with disabilities, and saw first hand how they changed children's lives. She knew what she had to do.
Our mission is to make MAGIC in children's lives, to bring smiles and joy in a most unusual way. We believe (and we've seen it happen over and over again!) that the lives of children with special needs are immeasurably enriched by having a small equine companion to love and care for -- so this is what we do! Our ponies are uniquely suited in temperament and size to small children, and we provide them to families completely without charge. Our version of the Velveteen Rabbit.
Thanks to the tireless energy of Marianne, PPL has grown into an international organization involving hundreds of volunteers throughout the country. We now have programs in almost every state, have placed ponies with many hundreds of children and hundreds more are on our waiting lists. We depend on both the hearts and hands of hundreds of volunteer breeders, promoters, and sponsors, as well as those who support us financially, so that we can continue to grow and serve children who need something special in their lives. For more information on the National program visit www.personalponies.org.