About Heart of a Warrior Inc
Because we want to empower youth to overcome challenges and empower families with childhood illness to find the heart of a warrior and use our very special animals to help them find it.
My name is Arwen Adams and I am a 13 year old competitive mounted archer. I'm the founder of Heart of a Warrior Inc. along with my parents. Some years back my papaw got stage 4 stomach cancer at age 55 before I was born. But my dad tells me he was a great man with a heart of gold and always helping less privileged youth with his non profit. The other thing that dad told me was when papaw was going through his cancer treatments he and my nana focused on helping him and didn't really focus any energy on themselves. And over the course of a year they just got really worn down. Papaw did miraculously go through remission for a short period of time and got to see me born and spend 8 months with me before the cancer came back. When papaw passed away that year my dad says he was devastated and angry. They didn't really have anyone that was reaching out to them.
So in 2015 we were blessed to be able to bring on a variety of animals and hand raise them all as pets. My gypsy cob and partner, Prince, three mini donkeys, tons of chickens, geese, guineas, a sulcata tortoise, iguana, and two Irish wolfhounds. We realized soon that we had something special. We started getting requests from families burdened with chronic childhood illness to do Make A Wish type activities because our animals were so loving and gentle. We saw that these animals were making these kids smile and laugh. But we saw something else too. We saw them making their parents and their siblings smile and laugh and forget about the struggles and challenges even if just for a day.
The best word to describe what we and they began to experience was "empowerment". Riding a horse for the first time, getting a donkey hug, becoming a cowboy, mounted archer, or a fairy princess for a day was empowering these families to continue to fight, live life, and move forward. So we wanted to continue to do that.
Then recently we have also seen something else with this mounted archery thing that I discovered a few years ago. Now a group of youth have been brought into our lives (mostly girls right now) so that when they are taught that they can shoot a bow and arrow from a horse something happens. It happened with me too, but seeing it in this growing group of youth, it is even more apparent. They become empowered with their ability to do this sport and yet still humbled by how difficult it is. They, like the families with kids going through chemo, begin to look past any of the pain in their life and find empowerment in teaming up with an animal to do something incredible. So we started "Heart of a Warrior Inc." so that we can put even more effort into all of this because this is "where animals empower."
Papaw would be proud of me and our team of youth doing so well at mounted archery. But I think he is probably even more proud that we have started "Heart of a Warrior Inc." I bet he is smiling too.