One of the greatest blessings we experience at Horseplay is the opportunity to work with the Presbyterian Home for Children(PHC). PHC provides a long-term home for kids and youth that are in need of a loving, positive place to belong and thrive. For the past two years the middle school and high school residents have come to us on a monthly, or more often, basis for Equine Assisted Therapy and life skills training.  We have used many of the techniques taught by EAGALA and those we create to deal with specific issues. For instance, we developed an eight week program based on Steven Covey's Seven Habits of Highly Effective People to teach them how they can improve themselves by taking control of the way they think and act.

 For the past eight months we have made a change and have had each of the youth pick a horse that is theirs for the time they are here and they are responsible for training that horse using Clinton Anderson's groundwork techniques.  They have had an opportunity to develop a relationship with "their" horse, and we are able to explore what is working in the relationship and what is not.  This serves as a metaphor for what works for them in their relationships with other people and makes the ineffective approaches obvious.  We are able to visit with them about the changes they can make in their approach to the horse to be more effective and then mirror how the miscues with the horse are similar to those they may be making with people.  It is amazing how these young people are able to see the changes they can make to improve their relationships through this experiential mode of therapy.  It is a wonderful addition to the traditional therapy they receive.

Becky and I and our volunteers love being able to be part of the lives of these young people.