The Barn at Spring Brook Farm began as the dream of Mary Beth Drobish in 2004 when she felt called to combine her passion for farm animals with her love for children. She believed that children with disabilities could benefit physically and psychologically from interactions with specially selected farm animals. In 2005, her dream began to take roots as The Barn was incorporated as a 501(c) 3 organization and the subsequent year children began to experience the magic of this 17-acre farm and the animals that live and work here. Since its beginning, The Barn has been a place of peace and life enrichment for children with disabilities and their families.
The Barn was created as a fully handicapped-accessible facility so that children who might otherwise not be able to experience the complete range of farm experiences and involvement in animal care would be able to do so. The goal of the programs is to promote confidence, improve self-esteem, and support leadership qualities in children with disabilities and autism spectrum disorder. Without exception, the response of the children who have participated up to this point has been overwhelmingly positive.
This unique program is the only one of its kind in the Chester County area and, based on our research, the only one on record anywhere. The Barn offers a distraction from lives often filled with difficulties and provides a safe, secure, and happy setting in which children can excel in a variety of areas.
Over the years the programs have grown to include individual visitation with one on one interaction between the children and animals; a summer day camp with fun filled days that include both animal interaction and activities designed to improve socialization and sensory skills; and school field trips that provide opportunities for large groups of special needs children to interact with the animals.
This formula for visitation has proven to be extremely successful, and over the last 10 years The Barn has transitioned from a primarily volunteer driven organization to a successful non-profit with a professional staff, a dedicated Board of Directors, and a large group of committed volunteers. In 2012, Mary Beth decided it was time for her to retire and spend more time with her children and grandchildren, but with her home on the property, she is never too far away. She also continues to be an active Board member and great advocate for the organization.
The Barn is a place where children can just be children. They can have fun in a safe environment while working towards their personal goals. The Barn has been a success because of the support from our community of benefactors and friends. The programming offered to children is truly unique and, it is very much needed. Thank you for your support and friendship. We value each and every person that has contributed towards making this organization a success.