Belarus Visitors Seize the Day
by Sue Blair
People come to Carpe Diem Farms for a variety of reasons. Generally it’s because they have read about us here in The Laurel or someone brings them because of their own experience here.
That’s how it was for these two young women, sisters from Belarus, visiting CDF volunteer Lindsay Trumpler and her mother Susan from Raleigh, the girls’ host. I share their story, in their own words.
“Hello Sue, This is Nastya, my sister Polina and I want to thank you very much for letting us spend time with the horses at your farm.
“I came to the United States as chaperone with a group of 39 kids from Belarus. Myself and three other chaperones traveled over 30 hours to bring the kids to the United States. We will stay with our host families in the United States for six weeks.
“Overflowing Hands (overflowinghands.org) organizes these trips each year in conjunction with ABRO (American Belarussian Outreach Organization). More than 400 Belarussian children have been hosted by American families during our six-week summer programs, providing relief from radiation contamination from the 1986 Chernobyl Nuclear Disaster. While their immune system and body organs heal, their hope and faith grow each summer they visit.
My sister is one of the kids. Polina loves animals in general, but horses take a special place in her heart. She has watched a lot of documentaries and read books about them. She always had a dream to ride a horse, but never had a chance to do that. We were so lucky to get a chance to visit Carpe Diem. This visit touched us so deeply. The spirit of this place left us all smiles. You were very lovely and welcoming. Barb is so friendly and helpful. The horses are beautiful, well looked after, very well-behaved. The place where the farm is located is amazing. We got a chance to meet all the horses, to pet the them, brush them, to get to know their history and got a chance to ride. We had such an amazing experience. And the dream of my sister came true.”
Carpe Diem Farms, is a 501(c)(3) experiential educational foundation, “Exploring the Human Potential Through Equines.”