Monthly Archives: February 2016

Changing Lives with Therapeutic Riding of Tucson

BOT horseAbout 18 years ago, our Vice President Paula Madden, learned about Therapeutic Riding of Tucson (TROT↗), and, upon invitation, immediately joined the TROT board of directors. She served on the board for eight years, took a break for five years and then joined up again for five years and counting.

What would inspire her to make such a long-standing commitment? “It’s a beautiful, magical, peaceful place where autistic children have been moved to speak their first word and veterans with war injuries have discovered a new way to reclaim their mobility,” Paula said.

Founded in 1974, TROT enriches the lives of people with special needs using horse-assisted activities and therapies to improve physical, mental, social and emotional well-being.

TROT provides therapeutic riding instruction to adults and children with a wide range of physical and cognitive disabilities.  More than 85 percent of TROT’s clients are school aged children (K-12) with cerebral palsy, developmental delay, Down syndrome, traumatic brain injury, multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, hearing/vision impairments, autism or other needs.

Adults served include those in a special program called Heroes on Horses for U.S. military veterans with disabilities such as spinal cord injury, amputated limbs, traumatic brain injury and/or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

The results can be life-changing, not only for the disabled but also for their families. TROT instructors set several different goals for the participant including physical goals to improve muscular strength and control, balance, posture, coordination and language/speech skills. Riders often experience an exciting degree of self-discovery, including the development of trust and confidence, willingness to try new things and improved interaction with family, friends and acquaintances. A well-trained and coordinated network of more than 200 volunteers assist weekly in programs and facility operations Monday through Saturday.

TROT is distinguished as a Premier Accredited Center by PATH International (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship). Only 15 percent of PATH centers in North America have achieved this level of accreditation.

TROT is always looking for volunteers to either walk alongside the participants or help to tack, train and care for the horses. Another way to get involved is to attend the upcoming Hearts & Horses Gala↗ event on April 9 at Ventana Canyon, which will feature live and silent auctions and a presentation by a family whose life has been changed with help from TROT. The Horsin’ Around country hoedown event, also hosted by TROT, will be held later in the year.

Donations are appreciated at any time. TROT relies greatly on the generosity of its donors to support its riding programs, the care and feeding of horses and to provide scholarships for those who qualify. We welcome you to join Paula and our bank in supporting this wonderful organization.

Want to help us get the word out about TROT? Please feel free to link to this article. If you would like to make a gift or add your name to the TROT mailing list, call 520 749-2360 x600.

TROT is located on Tucson’s east side at 8920 East Woodland Road. Click at↗


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How to Prepare to Meet with Your Lender

BT Don JenksWant the inside scoop on strategies to improve your chances of securing a business loan? At Bank of Tucson, we are always focused on how to help our clients succeed, so we’re happy to share our advice. Don Jenks, Executive Vice President at Bank of Tucson, has helped businesses throughout the Tucson area and beyond to secure loans and lines of credit, and he pulled together some valuable information to share with our clients and readers.

“If you’re looking to become bankable in the next year, open up a conversation with your banker now,” says Don. “Approach your banker with the right questions to find out how they look at cash flow, collateral and your unique risk elements. Even if they can’t lend you money now, they can at least define specific credit guidelines, providing you the tools to make your business bankable sooner.”

When you’re ready to walk in the door to seek funding for your growing business, make sure you’re prepared, he says. “Before you apply for funding, know your business inside and out and have a roadmap of where your business is going – financially and strategically. Know what you want so that you can express your vision to your banker before you apply for a loan or line of credit.”

Think of your banker as a consulting partner for your business. “We want to build a relationship in which you can openly discuss your strategic plan and seek advice from your banker about how to get there,” says Don.

That familiarity and understanding is critically important when you’re ready to apply for credit.

“If you are not an existing client, we’ll sit down with you to talk about your business so that we have a better understanding of your company and your objectives,” Don says. “That will help us when we do our preliminary review of your loan request. We’ll also talk with you about the kinds of financial products and services you currently use and how you can get the most value from your relationship with Bank of Tucson. Before finalizing our evaluation of your loan package, we will schedule a site visit to even better understand your business.”

For both new and established clients, when it’s time to submit a loan application, Don says be sure to include the following:

  • Biographies/resumes of the owner(s)
  • Ownership structure
  • A discussion of management succession
  • A discussion of business strategy and marketing strategy
  • A discussion about suppliers and supplier risk
  • A brief analysis of the competition
  • Sales or customer concentrations
  • A clear outline of your financing needs
  • Three years of tax returns or CPA-prepared financial statements and a recent interim financial statement
  • Three months of bank statements
  • Accounts payables and account receivables – current and aging
  • Three years of projections
  • Disclosure of any government regulatory exposure
  • Entity documents (Articles of Incorporation, partnership agreements, etc.)

Make sure your financial statements, including your balance sheet, are detailed. “You don’t want to present your banker with financials that look like a smile with missing teeth,” cautions Don.

Keep in mind also, the best business banking partners can offer resources, experience and connections for your business that are often just as valuable as the money they lend.