Between Horses and Humans provides Douglas County, Nevada and the surrounding area youth a safe and fun place to learn leadership and life skills through horsemanship. The program is a 100% donation funded non-profit program that pairs able-bodied children and youth ages 8 to 26 with equine partners: children who need help with self esteem, anger, aggression or emotional issues. The program’s goals are to have happy children and horses with self esteem, confidence, patience, trust, and kindness.
The skills being taught provide a way for the students to approach life’s challenges and questions, helping them feel more secure in their decisions, building their self-esteem, helping to create positive attitudes and helping them embrace life with more confidence. They feel connected to the horses and other students, learning how to value, honor and respect horses and humans in ways they hadn’t imagined. They develop horsemanship skills, leadership skills and social skills, but most importantly, they will become inspired leaders and generous of heart.
Because of the program’s generous donors ALL activities are FREE to participants so no one excluded.
The classes and workshops are fun and educational. Participants develop through specific leadership courses, six-week private courses, half and full day workshops, and seminars. A variety of methodologies are utilized, combining hands-on ground exercises, equine body work and riding, along with workshops and seminars, to accomplish the mission of “providing youth a place to learn leadership and life skills through horsemanship.” Instructors are primarily volunteers who have a heart for service, horses, and improving the lives of children.
Students are selected to participate in the program by the Board of Directors, and come to the program by referral from social service organizations, public and private schools, educators, counselors, parents, foster parents, and other individuals. They have a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences from abuse to behavioral issues to difficulty adjusting to divorce, foster or adoptive homes other life-altering events.
Programs encourage students to understand and develop a working relationship with the horses. Students are encouraged to explore what works and doesn’t work in their relationships with their horses: they have the freedom of experimentation, enjoying success, experiencing failure, and being empowered to make their own decisions. They learn to come from the heart and to build a partnership with their equine partner rather than dominate and control them.
On average, the program positively impacts the lives of 80 children per year. An incredibly generous gesture from Ruth Page and Greg Walsh in 2013 provided the use of Maddi’s Friesian Ranch at the foot of the Sierra Nevada Mountains to house the program’s horses and to host the program. The Ranch is the largest friesian breeding operation in north America. The facility provides stables, an arena, a round pen, and open pastures where children can work with the horses. Between Horses and Humans owns two well-trained and loving horses and has the privilege of using several privately-owned horses generously provided by their owners. You’re invited to read more about our horses.
Between Horses and Humans is a valuable program facilitating real change in the lives of local youth. The horses, volunteers, generous donors of both money and resources, referral sources, Board of Directors, and program participants form a community of love, support, and change. Be a part of the community today – read our blog, donate, or leave a comment. Heck, do all three!