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6657 Kimesville Road Liberty, NC 27298 336-565-9723 www.koppertop.org

Backgrounder FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 26, 2007

FOR INFORMATION CONTACT: Sara Portoghese Public Relations Intern 336-278-4276 sportoghese@elon.edu

Deborah E. Meridith, Founder of Kopper Top Deborah E. Meridith founded Kopper Top Life Learning Center in 1990 with one student who was training to compete in the Special Olympic State Games. The organization now serves 25 riders per week and over 1,500 people per month throughout its various programs. Kopper Top Life Learning Center is a public nonprofit, 501(c)3 recreational therapy center nestled in the Piedmont of North Carolina, dedicated to providing quality therapeutic horseback riding, recreational therapy, animal-assisted therapy and horticulture therapy to individuals with or without disabilities. Kopper Top is located on a 33-acre farm in Liberty, NC, and is home to over 100 animals including horses, goats, dogs, cats, chickens, rabbits, ferrets, and a peacock. Kopper Top is completely run by volunteers and is dependent upon donations to run its day-to-day activities. Meridith, her volunteers and Kopper Top provide an ideal setting for therapy and leisure education while giving greater meaning and purpose to lives stressed with disabilities and hardship. The founding of Kopper Top opened new horizons never thought possible for people with disabilities. The interaction between the horse and the rider benefits the rider physically, cognitively, emotionally and psychologically, which empowers them to feel independence and freedom. Meridith, a graduate of the University of North Carolina Greensboro, is a state and nationally certified/licensed therapeutic recreation specialist. In 1999, she served as the coach of the Special Olympics equestrian athletes for Team USA-North Carolina during the Special Olympics World Summer Games held in Raleigh. Meridith has been acknowledged and honored for her achievements and services by receiving over a dozen awards and recognitions throughout her career. Her gifts and expertise with horses has allowed her to enrich numerous people’s lives. For more information on Kopper Top, please visit www.koppertop.org. ###

Kopper Top Backgrounder  

Kopper Top Backgrounder