Build to Thrive: Capital Campaign

A $1M gift from the O’Shaughnessy-Hurst Memorial Foundation allowed us to purchase our first permanent home in 2012, a 17-acre farm in Clifton, VA.

In order to meet the growing demand for our services, and provide an enhanced experience for current riders, their families, and volunteers, we have embarked on a whole scale capital improvement project that will unleash our property’s full potential.

Caps Video 

Click the image to learn more about Build to Thrive and Barry Trotz, Head Coach of the Washington Capitals, and his wife Kim Trotz's participation as Honorary Co-Chairs.


This vision includes:

  • The construction of a 17,000 square-foot indoor riding arena, including a lesson observation room and restroom facilities.
  • The development of a new and improved outdoor arena, relocated away from the road, providing a safer, more comfortable experience for our riders, equines, and volunteers.
  • Expanded parking, desperately needed to accommodate our growing number of riders, volunteers, and guests.
  • A fully accessible playground, that will allow children with disabilities to fully participate in this important form of childhood play with their siblings and other children.
  • Expansive infrastructure improvements, necessary to undergird all of the above and also to lay the foundation for future capital improvements, including a new, larger barn and a therapy center, that will allow riders to access multiple therapeutic services-- both equine and non-equine-- all in one central location.

These improvements will allow current riders to continue progressing year-round, regardless of the weather.  Currently, lessons stop in the coldest winter months and hottest summer months.  A lack of adequate day light for late afternoon and evening lessons as well as adverse weather events present additional challenges, especially for children who are medically fragile and have vision and/or hearing challenges.

Equally exciting, the building project will allow us to accommodate more riders and add new services, including equine-assisted psychotherapy.  Currently, staff must turn away such requests for services almost daily.  The waiting list for therapeutic riding services currently stands at close to two years, and for hippotherapy, at over two years.  

Perhaps most importantly, the capital improvement project will allow us to grow the size and scope of the NVTRP community.  A community that offers people with disabilities a place where they belong, an opportunity to connect with others, and the inspiration to pursue goals theyd previously thought unattainable.  In the words of one young riders mom, “Riding [at NVTRP] is Alyssas happy place, and when I spend so much time watching her struggle, the chance to see her happy is a real gift.” 


Planning for the building project began in 2012, after the purchase of the property.  Bowman Consulting and Blackburn Architects have served as our core professional team to date, and Scott-Long was selected as our builder after an extensive RFP process.

In August of 2016 we received technical Site Plan Approval from Fairfax County, the culmination of three years of work, most of which focused on resolving unanticipated issues around fire suppression measures and changes in the county’s storm water management regulations. 

We are currently value engineering the site plan and building design with an eye toward identifying cost saving measures that will not negatively impact the finished product.  After finalizing any changes, we will apply for a building permit from Fairfax County and are looking to begin construction in November 2017.  We have been advised to anticipate 3-4 months for construction and are timing the construction so as to minimize the disruption of our on-going lessons.

To learn more about how you can make possibilities come alive for so many in our community, please download our campaign brochure HERE or contact Development Director Wendy Baird at or (703) 764-0269.  

Donations of financial support, materials and/or services such as site development, electrical, or plumbing work are all needed.

Budget/Funding Request:

Working towards a total project cost of $3,460,000, the budget breaks down as follows:

Planning/Permitting                                                  $566,000

Building Costs*                                                        $2,770,000

Campaign Costs                                                           $98,500

Program Operating Assistance                                  $25,000 

Fundraising to Date                                                $2,050,000

Balance to be Raised                                              $1,410,000

*Includes: Infrastructure/Sitework, $1,500,000; Indoor Riding Arena, $800,000; and Insurance/Fees, $250,000.

Key Donors:

  • Anonymous (3)
  • *O’Shaughnessy-Hurst Memorial Foundation
  • Jean and Ric Edelman
  • *TL Cline Foundation
  • NVTRP Board of Governors
  • *Reed Smith
  • Phillip L. Graham Fund
  • *Hillsdale Fund
  • MEBS Global Reach
  • Ronald L. and Ann G. Marlow
  • Jim and Mary Beth Carroll
  • The Pless Foundation
  • Martha Prine
  • Jeff and Sally Wilklow
  • Tom and Jeanne Capasse
  • Federal Acquisition Strategies
  • Leah Coxsey
  • Barry and Kim Trotz
  • Louise and Mark Foreman
  • Jacque and Richard Trefry   
  • The Wise Foundation     

*Donated to the 2012 purchase of NVTRP’s property, O’Shaughnessy Farm.

Madeline, 10, and her mom Rebecca at the 2016 Ride to Thrive Show

"Riding has so many benefits for Madeline and is the thing she looks forward to the most each week.  She has a huge emotional connection with the horses and that connection motivates her more than anything else . . . Routine is essential for so many children with disabilities.  Having the indoor will let us keep her routine in place and make sure her progress continues all year long." - Rebecca Patterson

Shannon, 16, doing hippotherapy on Cinder

"Riding at NVTRP is the most phenomenal therapy for Shannon.  What I value the most is that she enjoys it.  It's so rare that she gets to do something her typical peers get to do.  Riding gives her the chance to have fun, in addition to providing a host of physical benefits . . . When you live in the world of special needs, you get used to waiting lists.  This building project means that many more kids like Shannon can get off NVTRP's waiting list and started riding."  - Megan O'Boyle