top of page

Meet our Dedicated Team

Our program could not exist without our wonderful team of staff and volunteers.

sarah.jpeg

Sarah Russoniello - Founder and Director

Sarah is a graduate of Penn State University with a degree in Letters, Arts and Sciences.  Lifelong horse lover, began taking riding lessons at age six, she has found her own comfort and  healing through time spent working in the barn along side of horses.  As a single mother, when her young daughter showed interest in horses in 2010, Sarah then decided to obtain her PATH International certification in therapeutic horseback riding instruction.  In October of 2013, Sarah was certified as a PATH Therapeutic Riding Instructor.  In April of 2014, Serendipity took its first therapeutic client through the generosity of a local horse farm willing to lease time, space and a horse to her program. The program quickly began to grow.  

In 2016 Sarah then decided to pursue an additional PATH certification as an Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning.  Throughout the years, Serendipity has served over 100 participants through various mental health organizations as well as 86 therapeutic riders through both therapeutic riding instruction and equine assisted-learning activities. 

In November of 2019, Serendipity settled into is current location, Shekinah at Weaver's Stables; also a former PATH center member located in Luzerne County, where we currently offer a variety of equine related activities, therapeutic riding instruction and farm based education opportunities. 

Sarah recently completed her certification in the Stable Moments® program; a program specifically geared to improve the life course of foster and adopted children who have experienced developmental trauma.  Serendipity is excited to become a Stable Moments® location and will begin offering the Stable Moments® program in April of 2022.

Sarah's passion is connecting horses and humans to promote positive life experiences, impacting the life skills of individuals with special needs in a safe and supportive environment.    

Staff and Volunteers

Smiling Girl

Matt

Matt is a graduate of Wilkes University with a bachelors degree in early childhood education.  Matt has worked with children from preschool age to young adults and obtained teaching certifications in early childhood education, secondary English as well as special education at elementary and high school levels for the state of PA.  He currently enjoys working with adults with behavioral needs in functional community settings.  Matt loves learning about horses alongside clients and enjoys the daily challenges and teachable moments that farm life offers.

maggie 2.jpeg

Maggie

Volunteer

Jillian.jpeg

Jillian Russoniello

Trainer and Therapeutic Helper

Kayleigh.jpeg

Kayleigh Raposa

Trainer and Volunteer

Robert.jpeg

Robert

Robert was introduced to horses in 2010 at Shekinah. Even at the young age of 10, Robert enjoyed the challenges of working on the farm, learning about horses and helping others.  In 2021, Robert returned to the same farm; now Serendipity and began to volunteer.  Robert quickly gained trust and now works independently and is responsible for farm chores/horse care once a week.  Robert helped design and build our community garden in Spring of 2021, he attended a bee keeping course and assisted in the development of Serendipity's first honey bee hive.  Robert's favorite project to date has been the design and construction of a run in shelter for our ponies and goats; a project that Robert has been the lead helper throughout.  Robert has also become a peer mentor in our Adult Learner's program, a program designed to enhance vocational, life and social skills of young adults.  Robert assists peers in developing skills around the farm and learning how to work safely with horses. Robert's favorite horse is Birch, he loved being a part of the decision to bring Birch to our farm.  He also proudly assists as Birch's handler in two therapeutic riding lessons each week.

grace_edited.jpg

Grace

Volunteer

Juliana.jpeg

Juliana

Volunteer

mitch.jpg

Mitchell

IMG_7781.HEIC

Leigh Anthony

Media Manager and Volunteer

Smiling Girl

Steph

Volunteer

bottom of page