t.o.b.e: work to ride – the other black experience
January 28, 2010
Non-profit made History with the first African-American Polo team in the nation.
“Founded in 1994, Work to Ride (WTR) is a 501 c3, non-profit community-based prevention program that aids disadvantaged urban youth though constructive activities centered on horsemanship, equine sports and education. The program is housed at Chamounix Stables, located in Fairmount Park, Philadelphia. This setting provides a unique opportunity to bring urban youth in contact with animals and nature. Work to Ride is designed as a long-term program for 7 to 19 year-old youth who must commit to a minimum of one year of participation. It is, however, expected that participants will choose to remain with the program through high school graduation. Work to Ride graduates receive help with college enrollment, and most also choose to return to Chamounix to mentor new participants.”
Shortly after the inception of the WTR program it was discovered that WTR youth were extremely motivated and interested in the sport of polo. Speed of the horse, athletic ability of horse and rider combined with a competitive atmosphere has created enthusiasm and commitment unmatched by any other horse sport. In 1998 WTR partnered with Cowtown Polo Club in Woodstown, N.J. As playing members of the club WTR youth play outdoor club polo every weekend from mid-May through October either at Cowtown or away at clubs in the 5 state area. The Cowtown/WTR Interscholastic Polo Team was formed in 1999 with the help of the Polo Training Foundation and the United States Polo Association. The Cowtown/WTR team competed in the National Interscholastic Polo Tournament at the Virginia Polo Center, Charlottesville, VA. The team made history as the first all African American Team to compete in Interscholastic Polo. The boys won their first Regional Interscholastic game in 2000 in the consolation round and won the first round bracket at the Regional Interscholastic Polo Tournament at University of Connecticut in 2003. For the first time the Cowtown WTR team won the Eastern Regional Interscholastic Tournament in 2005. All of the CT/WTR team were voted to the All Star team. Jabarr Rosser was voted the #1 All Star player at the National Interscholastic Tournament in 2005. Jabarr is also the first African American to be voted #1 All Star. The 2008-2009 Cowtown/Work to Ride Interscholastic Polo Season is represented by 3 teams: The Cowtown/Work to Ride, The Cowtown Dahlias and Lancaster/Work to Ride. Playing for Cowtown/Work to Ride are Kareem Rosser, Daymar Rosser and Brandon Rease. Playing for the Cowtown Dahlias are Samantha Rahe-Krick and Erica Russell. The Lancaster/Work to Ride team is composed of Drea Taylor, Ken Shaun Walker, PabloSerano and Kevin Jones. Thank you Lancaster Polo Club and, as always, thank you Cowtown for sponsoring the kids!” Source: http://www.worktoride.net
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