Welcome To The Corey's Day On The Farm Website!

 

When: May 12th & 13th, 2014

Where:  Kitsap County Fairgrounds

For Who:  Special needs kids

Contact:  Coleta Corey (360) 692-4769

 

Coleta & Nick Corey of Silverdale, Wash., have reveled in the spirit of selflessness and giving back for the past 40 years. They are the founders of Corey's Day At The Farm, an event during which special-needs children can enjoy a day of horseback riding, petting farm animals, being outside, taking hayrack rides and eating grilled hot dogs. The annual event takes place the Monday and Tuesday following Mother's Day and evolved after Corey's special-needs son, Danny, participated in a “show-and-tell” at his school in 1968.

“We took some puppies in for some of his classmates to see, and it was pretty obvious they didn't always have a chance to be around animals. They didn't know how to hold the puppies,” she says. “So we decided on the way home that we'd invite them out to see more animals so they could see what it was like to be around animals.”

That first year, 26 children took part in the day on the farm, riding on ponies with the aid of three of Corey's five sons, all of whom had their own horses and participated in rodeos. It went so well that the Corey's invited the class back for the next year, and some of the other schools heard about it and asked if they could bring their children. The event has grown exponentially to include over 1,000 children from four counties.

“It's really a big thing,” Corey says. “It's excellent therapy for the children. We've had some breakthroughs with the autistic children.”

Autism is just one of the special needs confronted by children who come to the farm. Kids with emotional, developmental and physical problems are all welcome. Even youngsters in wheelchairs are hoisted up on the backs of the horses and given rides. Each school is responsible for deciding which students need and would benefit from the day at the farm and busses them out to the event.

Seven years before Corey opened her own embroidery shop, Monograms By Coleta, in 1986, Corey's Day At The Farm outgrew the family farm and had to be moved to the Kitsap County Fairgrounds in Silverdale. What has also grown with the event is the spirit of volunteerism and giving associated with making the two days successful. Local merchants donate food and beverages—enough to make 2,000 lunches—while Silverdale civic organizations donate money and time. In addition to the teachers and parents who take part, anywhere from 150 to 200 people volunteer their time with the children. Many bring animals for the children to pet or ride for the day.

“Everybody is very good to give to us. If they can't donate the whole thing, they give us a bare-bones price on anything we have to have,” Corey says. “Everybody has such a good time that it's not really work.”

The days at the farm involve work year-round for the former Department of Defense torpedo-builder-turned-embroiderer. At the beginning of the year, Corey sends letters to the merchants and organizations which have previously donated time, money, goods or all three, asking for their help again—and she rarely gets turned down. Corey's Day At The Farm won her Bridgewater, N.J.-based, Brother International Corp.'s first “At Your Side” award for community service in June. It has become a community event that the children look forward to from the first day of school, and that breaks down the walls which sometimes separate people from the truth about what it means to be a special-needs person. Some of the uncertainty about how to handle special-needs people, especially children, is lost by helping at Corey's Day At The Farm. After working the event, volunteers understand that all it takes to make a disabled person's day brighter is a simple “hello.”

“People know about it,” Corey says. “I've been asked, ‘Are you the ones who do the day on the farm?’ They all know about it and are very proud of what we do. As are we. I'm so happy we are able to give this to the children. They need a lot of experiences, this is ours we're able to give.”

 

©1968-2013 Corey's Day On The Farm

Email Us

 

Website designed & maintained by www.shoplocalbiz.com