Lovelane Special Needs Horseback Riding Program was founded by Debby Sabin, an Occupational Therapist, on Lovelane Road in Weston in 1988 with just five riders, one volunteer and three borrowed horses! A year later it was incorporated as a non-profit and in 1993 Lovelane moved to a new backyard barn, home of horse trainer Elsie Rodney. In 1995 it doubled in size and expanded to Debby’s backyard, where the program continued to grow.
With demand growing, a large wait list of children with special needs, and having created a reputation as a top quality therapeutic program, a successful capital campaign in 2004 enabled the program to move into a permanent home designed exclusively for the special needs population. The facility includes indoor and outdoor arenas, a therapy room, office space, horse
stalls and access to outdoor trails.
Today, Lovelane provides services to 130 students a week with the help of 197 volunteers.
Debby and the Lovelane Board of Directors understood, from its early days, that Lovelane was a valuable and unique resource for families and instituted what became known as the “Stan Sabin Sustainability Fund.” The goal of this fund was to assure Lovelanes financial stability in the future, including maintaining its facility, planning for the unexpected and assuring its longevity to carry out its mission.
In 2019, 31 years after founding Lovelane, successfully ensuring Lovelane’s financial stability and creating the highest quality therapeutic program, growing Lovelane to its perfect size — 12 horses, 130 students, 200 volunteers, 17 instructors and a dedicated, loyal staff, Executive Director and Founder, Debby Sabin handed the reins to Associate Executive Director, Megan Donovan.
This transition represented the success of a board plan of action that was set in motion nearly five years earlier as Megan and Debby had worked side by side. Debby will continue with Lovelane in several areas, best of which is her teaching. We are fortunate to have Megan leading our team. She brings 27 years of experience in not-for-profit management as well as in the therapeutic riding industry and has a clear commitment and passion for Lovelane.
Lovelane is a 501(c)(3), non-profit organization and is an accredited member of The Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship (PATH) International®.