Written by Sharon Garrett of Ollie and Friends
Ollie and Friends is a small, family-run business that provides pony parties to children of all ages, along with therapy visits to both children with life limiting illnesses and the elderly.
The organisation was established in memory of my son, Timmy, who suffered from Tuberous Sclerosis, a very rate and debilitating brain disease. Timmy was diagnosed at 6 weeks of age and was severely handicapped both physically and mentally. He was a very brave young man who suffered greatly throughout his short life and, although he was unable to speak, he brought pleasure to those who loved and cared for him, with his amazing smile and infectious laugh.
Sadly, Timmy died at the age of 25 in July 2010. I wanted to establish something in his memory that would benefit other handicapped children and those suffering from life-limiting illnesses.
Throughout Timmy’s childhood years, he received expert care from Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital, and they continued to provide me with support and advice right up until the day that he died. I wanted to be able to give something back to them, both to thank them for what they did for Timmy, but also to help them to continue with the fantastic work that they do.
Another charity that we work closely with is Sebastian’s Action Trust that supports children with life limiting illnesses and their families, and one that Timmy would have benefitted from greatly as child.
We visit care homes, with Teddy, our miniature Shetland going up in the lift and visiting residence in their rooms!
We are extremely grateful for the support that we receive from Lee and his team at Equine America, the products are exceptional and have made a huge impact on the yard.
We have 5 white, grey ponies in the team that need to be immaculate at all times, and therefore a good shampoo is essential! The Whitening shampoo does just that with our before and after photos speaking for themselves!
The Whitening Shampoo results seen here - ready for unicorn duties!
Another firm favourite of mine is the Super So Kalm powder- although all of the ponies are chosen for their chilled temperaments, we do experience some pretty extreme situations at times and the Super So Kalm powder keeps them grounded and chilled at all times, something that is essential when working with small children!
As we all know most small ponies can be prone to being overweight which then leads to other problems including laminitis. As such during the spring and summer months when the grass is at its richest, most of the team spend a lot of time in their stables- Airways Powder and Solution are a godsend during this time and helps to eliminate the dry cough that they can develop during these times.
This summer a number of the ponies were adversely affected by pollen and so we tried Pollen Eze which had an immediate effect resulting in happy comfortable ponies again.
Another problem that we encounter during the summer months is flies with Mopsey also prone to sweet itch -I have found that feeding the FORGET FLIES liquid in combination with the FORGET FLIES spray and sooth itch spray, has made a massive difference in his management- the other ponies benefit massively from the spray alone with one application lasting for well over 8 hours- the best fly spray that I have ever used by far !!
I can honestly say that the Equine America products have transformed the way in which I manage my ponies and I wouldn’t want to be without them.
Sharon and one of her star ponies all dressed up and ready to go!
Equine America are delighted to support Sharon and her wonderful team of ponies with all the fantastic work they do, bringing joy to so many!