BARN AT SPRING BROOK FARM INC

West Chester, PA   |  www.springbrook-farm.org

Mission

The mission of The Barn is to enrich the lives of children with disabilities through animal-assisted activities. The children we serve, ages 2 – 12 who live in Chester County and the surrounding Greater Philadelphia Region, have a wide variety of physical, cognitive or developmental concerns, including Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD); Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder; Cerebral Palsy; Physical Disabilities; Down Syndrome; Epilepsy; Dyslexia; Intellectual Disabilities; and Developmental Delays.

Ruling year info

2006

Executive Director

Ms. Nan Latona

Main address

360 Locust Grove Rd

West Chester, PA 19382 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

20-3417567

NTEE code info

Specialized Education Institutions/Schools for Visually or Hearing Impaired, Learning Disabled (B28)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

At The Barn at Spring Brook Farm children who are differently abled, including children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), benefit physically, psychologically, cognitively and developmentally from interactions with specially selected farm animals. The 2013 American Community Survey conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau estimated that 3,865 children with disabilities were living in Chester County. Pennsylvania as a whole claims that 5.2% of their children under the age of 18 have a disability. These numbers do not take into account the staggering new statistics on Autism Spectrum Disorder. The Centers for Disease Control now estimates that one in every 45 children is now diagnosed with autism. Our staff and volunteers focus on the developmental progress and emotional support that smaller animals can provide for our children. Our animals are not only less intimidating for children, but their size allows children who are constantly in the care of others to become the caretakers.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Camp Geronimo

Camp Geronimo, our most popular program, provides up to 96 children ages 6 to 12 a unique summer day camp experience - an opportunity to have fun in a safe, secure setting while learning new skills that address their specific needs. Camp is offered in six 1-week sessions and is overseen by our Program Manager. Our unique one-to-one ratio of counselors to campers allows children with a range of abilities to participate in summer camp, truly a first for many of them. A Registered Nurse is on site each day of camp to ensure each child’s needs are met.

Population(s) Served
Infants and toddlers
People with learning disabilities

Our Individual Programs, offered to children ages 2 to 12 once a week for twelve-week sessions, provide one-on-one therapy with an experienced volunteer. Our staff works with parents and guardians to develop an individualized Barn Activity Plan for each child to help set goals, track progress and to complement any existing therapy or education. Examples of goals include improving fine motor skills, developing communication skills and building self-esteem. Weekly sessions are scheduled for March through May, 2-6 p.m.; June through August 3-6 p.m.; and September through November, 2 to 6 p.m.

Population(s) Served
People with learning disabilities
People with physical disabilities

The Barn offers four annual socialization events geared to local families who have children with disabilities. These include an Autumn Festival, Summer Splash, Spring Fling and a Winter Pancake Breakfast. The goal of these events is to provide our families further opportunities to interact with one another and with the Barn staff and animals. In addition, The Barn provides parent support in the form of seminars and mutual support groups and as well as a lending library of resources for children with special needs.

Population(s) Served
People with disabilities
People with physical disabilities
Children

The Barn also offers educational field trips to groups of students from local schools and programs such as the Chester County Intermediate Unit (CCIU), the ARC of Chester County, Greenwood Elementary School, Overbrook School for the Blind, and St. Edmund’s Home for Children among others. Each group brings their own counselors and aides and sets goals in conjunction with the Barn’s staff. Children, parents and staff participating in these field trips are often amazed at the extent of the hands-on interaction involved. The Barn can accommodate twelve field trips annually, with 15 children accompanied by aides participating. Our trips serve to promote our mission and programmatic success.

Population(s) Served
People with learning disabilities
People with physical disabilities

All of our programs center around our children interacting with our specially chosen animals. Each animal at The Barn is specifically selected for its suitability to work with children with disabilities. Among our animals are miniature horses, miniature Sicilian donkeys, Nigerian dwarf goats, sheep, rabbits, hens, a barn cat, and a pot-bellied pig. These animals provide a range of learning opportunities from walking them to grooming and feeding, depending on the specific abilities of the child. The Barn focuses on the developmental progress and emotional support that smaller animals can provide for our children. Our animals are not only less intimidating for children, but their size allows children who are mostly and constantly in the care of others to become the care-takers. This is extraordinarily empowering and life-enriching—and we believe it is key element what sets our program apart from others in the region.

Population(s) Served
People with physical disabilities
People with learning disabilities
Children and youth
People with other disabilities

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Total number of fields trips

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Educational field trips

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

In 2020, all fieldtrips were either via Zoom or pre-recorded.

Average number of service recipients per month

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Children, People with disabilities

Related Program

Animal Assisted Activities

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

In 2020 approximately 38 children were served by virtual and/or in-person programs monthly. In 2019, all programs were in-person.

Number of campers enrolled

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Children, People with disabilities

Related Program

Camp Geronimo

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

Due to restrictions presented by COVID in 2020, in-person camp was cancelled & a week of virtual camp was piloted. Camp Geronimo resumed at a reduced capacity in summer 2021.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Program Goals
At the core of our mission is our capacity to continue to offer the unique and effective programs for which we have become known. Our Strategic Plan (2016-2019) underscores our commitment to further strengthening our organization's financial health and governance by increasing individual, foundation and corporate funding sources, and expanding our Board of Directors in number, expertise and diversity. We also continue to focus on evolving our programming to maximize the impact we can have of the lives of the children, including:
• Maximizing the number of children who participate in our Individual Programs
• Adding new sensory activities and socialization opportunities into our Individual Programs
• Increasing our staff as fundraising allows to including Master's Degree level interns and Special Education Teachers to serve consistently throughout the six weeks of Camp Geronimo.
• Developing more educational and support opportunities for parents and families of the children we serve.
• Expanding public awareness of our programs through outreach, partnerships and attendance at local events.

The Barn itself, a reproduction bank barn built on the property at our founder's personal expense, is fully handicapped-accessible; all areas of The Barn were constructed with the special needs of the children in mind. Within The Barn are stalls, feed and tack rooms, bathrooms, and upper and lower levels. Outside The Barn, a specially-designed wheelchair-accessible hay wagon provides trips around the property and a handicapped-accessible tree house beautifully built by volunteers offers a peaceful place for children to spend time in nature. The Barn offers our participating children a truly distinctive experience. No other place in Chester County, or more broadly in the Greater Philadelphia Region, has the same type of programming. Our impact on the community, therefore, is far reaching. We provide a niche opportunity for every child who comes to The Barn. Each of our signature programs provide an unmatched degree of individual attention and activities designed to advance the health, development and wellbeing of the children. Our programs provide:
• Children with disabilities the opportunity to improve motor skills and muscle development as a result of grooming animals and taking them for walks around the property.
• Children who have difficulty interacting with others the chance to enhance socialization thanks to repeated eye contact with animals and practicing basic introduction skills.
• Children with autism the opportunity to reach higher levels of task management and mental alertness by focusing on specific tasks such as feeding the animals.
Each child is unique in personality, needs and goals. However, all children experience The Barn's beautiful, engaging, peaceful and fun environment, where evidence-based progress is made by allowing them to enjoy and grow from the same types of experience available to other children.

Founded in 2006, our organization has continually grown in the numbers of children we serve, the scope and breadth of our programming, depth of our staff experience and in our network of partners and volunteers. Our greatest asset is the experience of our staff which includes:
• Nan Latona, Executive Director, has served in this capacity since May, 2019 and is responsible for the execution of the organization's mission and for the oversight of all operations, program development, fundraising, budgeting and communications. She has extensive experience in business development and fundraising, executive management, financial management and budgeting.
• Annie Kozicki has served as our Program Director as of June, 2019 and is responsible for all program development, volunteer recruitment and management, and the implementation of each child's Barn Activity Plan. She is a Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant/Licensed and has significant experience working with differently-abled children.
• Chris Guldin has been The Barn's Facilities Manager for over 10 years. In addition to caring for the animals central to The Barn's mission and maintaining the grounds and buildings, Chris also assists in program delivery.

Last year, The Barn served over 350 children through 3,500+ hours of programming. To accomplish this, The Barn benefited from the service of over 200 dedicated volunteers who contributed over 5,000 hours of time to supplement Barn staff. In 2020 we will continue in our current programs, while also seeking additional ways to reach out to more families who need our services. We expect once again to experience growing numbers of

Our programs and reputation continue to attract experienced and dedicated volunteers who provide unprecedented one-to-one counsel and care for each of our child participants. In addition, findings from a multi-year partnership with West Chester University's Graduate Social Work program on the benefits of animal-assisted therapy for differently-abled children was recently published.

Our small core staff and dedicated volunteers achieve our mission through four signature programs that are offered March through the end of November annually: Camp Geronimo, Individual Programs, Educational Field Trips and Socialization Events. Camp Geronimo, our most popular program, provides up to 96 children ages 6 to 12 a unique summer day camp experience - an opportunity to have fun in a safe, secure setting while learning new skills that address their specific needs.

Our Individual Programs, offered to children ages 2 to 12 once a week for twelve-week sessions, provide one-on-one therapy with an experienced volunteer. Our staff works with parents and guardians to develop an individualized Barn Activity Plan for each child to help set goals, track progress and to complement any existing therapy or education. Examples of goals include improving fine motor skills, developing communication skills and building self-esteem.

The Barn offers four annual socialization events geared to local families who have children with disabilities. These include an Autumn Festival, Summer Splash, Spring Fling and a winter Pancake Breakfast. The goal of these events is to provide our families further opportunities to interact with one another and with the Barn staff and animals. In addition, The Barn provides parent support in the form of seminars and mutual support groups and as well as a lending library of resources for children with special needs. Approximately 30 families participate in each of our four events annually.

The Barn also offers educational field trips to groups of students from local schools and programs such as the Chester County Intermediate Unit (CCIU), the ARC of Chester County, Greenwood Elementary School, Overbrook School for the Blind, and St. Edmund's Home for Children among others. Each group brings their own counselors and aides and sets goals in conjunction with the Barn's staff. Children, parents and staff participating in these field trips are often amazed at the extent of the hands-on interaction involved. The Barn can accommodate twelve field trips annually, with 15 children accompanied by aides.

Financials

BARN AT SPRING BROOK FARM INC
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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BARN AT SPRING BROOK FARM INC

Board of directors
as of 11/1/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Ms. Sharon Cichocki

Former HR Executive and Animal Advocate

Term: 2019 - 2021

Mary Beth Drobish

Founder/Visionary

J. August Gerhardt

CFA, Radnor Capital Management

Heather Carlino

Clinical Site Coordinator for Pediatric Acute Care NP Program, NNP Program, and Pediatric and Neonatal CNS Program University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing

Lucas Saunders

VP of Marketing and Client Development, Fiduciary Trust International

Dr. Karen Schneck

Retired Educator and Elementary School Principal

Francis Abbott III

Trainer, Fair Hill Training Center

Robert McLaughlin

Former Finance Executive

Sharon Osidach

Sr. Executive Assistant to the President, Crane Payment Innovations

Roman Osidach

Director, BlackRock, Americas Accounting Services & Oversight

Joan Coleman

Former Manager of Clinical Operations – Pediatrics, Bayada Home Health Care Agency Registered Nurse

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 11/30/2020

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female
Sexual orientation
Decline to state
Disability status
Decline to state

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

 

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data