Thanks and Giving

by Dr. Patrick Vaughn, Acting President, STLCC-Wildwood

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving holiday. I didn’t get back to family in Texas this year but my wife and I had a great dinner with good friends during a no-travel-turkey-day.

This year though, I added a new place to my list of favorites in and around Wildwood, MO – the Equine-Assisted Therapy center on 109, about two miles south of campus. As a major project for the year, the West St. Louis County Rotary Club chose to donate $10,000 and some volunteer labor to the E.A.T. The project for this year was to construct an office area within the new barn on their property.

Several Rotarians, including yours truly, spent the Friday after Thanksgiving hanging dry-wall in the new barn. And, did we ever hang some dry-wall. In fact we earned a new nickname; “The Drywall Dudes,” according to the folks at E.A.T. I am thankful that we had the opportunity to help such an important organization. Here is a little borrowed information from their Facebook page:

“Equine-Assisted Therapy, Inc. has but one purpose; that is to provide horsemanship experiences to persons with mental, physical, and psychological disabilities in order to enhance the quality and productivity of their lives. E.A.T. provides services to the St. Louis area disabled who are seeking an alternative, fun and effective form of therapy with horses.”

And, I would add “with donkeys too.” Two of the local “staff members” came up to check me out as I took their photo during a break in hanging dry-wall. They seemed very appreciative of their new digs.

Scrolling through the photos on their Facebook page, you can tell they touch the lives of so many in need directly through interaction with a host of kind and gentle animals. If you have the time please check them out at And, if you are interested in lending a hand sign up to volunteer. You will be thankful you did.


A donkey at the Equine Assisted Therapy Center.

.photo of a donkey in the foreground and a donkey in the background2 donkeys


About Patrick Vaughn

President, St. Louis Community College-Wildwood
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2 Responses to Thanks and Giving

  1. Julie says:

    Working with disabled individuals is truly an enriching experience; I have volunteered countless hours helping to enrich the lives of the disabled. Although I drive on 109 a few times per week, I have never noticed the E.A.T. Center, I will definitely have to check it out! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Patrick Vaughn says:

    Have you had a chance to check E.A.T. out yet? I am interested in hearing about your experiences there.

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