Sibling Bonding at the Stable


Fred Cruz
SeriousFun Contributor 


Anyone who has attended a SeriousFun camp can attest to the way that it offers unique opportunities to create profound bonds. These bonds can form between individual campers, families who have never met before, and even siblings who don't usually get to spend as much time together as they would like. For siblings Kaden, Henry, and Lainey, horseback riding at Victory Junction, the SeriousFun camp in North Carolina, was that opportunity.


Ehlers family in the barn meeting horses


Cindy and Patte, the children's moms, first brought the trio to Victory Junction in 2015. Over the course of one family week­end, 19-year-old Kaden got a gold medal for archery, 11-year-old Lainey made a memory box in arts and crafts that she still keeps treasures in, and 13-year-old Henry rode a horse for the first time. Many family weekends later, the siblings have developed an affinity for horseback riding following Henry's first go and his moms credit that joint activity as a powerful conduit through which her children have grown closer and closer.


"What we love the most about coming to Victory Junction is the ability for all of my children to participate at their level. It's something that all of my children can do together." - Cindy Elhers


Lainey riding a horse at Victory Junction


Through riding, Cindy and Patte have observed a newfound confidence and a willingness to try new things in all three of their children: Kaden, who has undergone multiple spinal surgeries; Henry, who is on the autism spectrum; and typically-developing Lainey. The three-hour drive to Victory Junction is a small price that the family is happy to pay for experiences that have enabled all three siblings to overcome fears and see each other as kids who like to have fun. It's because of Victory Junction staff's meticulous efforts to make it possible for Kaden, Henry, and Lainey to each participate in their hobby together that the brothers and sister are now able to see beyond their medical conditions. The kids' moms say those efforts provide an invaluable gift for the family to unwind and connect with each other in meaningful ways.

Cindy says, "Victory Junction is a place you can go to have fun with your kids and where everything has already been considered. The entire facility is set up to support all sorts of different abilities. There truly are no barriers. The staff are the best on earth. They do everything to make sure the experience is the absolute best it can be for every single person."



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