NEW FIRST RESPONDER HORSE PROGRAM
FREE is partnering with First Responder Trauma Counselors to offer First Responders the unique experience of working with horses, bonding with them and experiencing their calming effect.
WHAT WILL FIRST RESPONDERS DO IN CLASS?
Classes will be experiential and unmounted. No riding experience is necessary.
You will be paired with a highly trained horse in classes led by a team of Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH Intl) -certified instructors. An FRTC mental health professional will be in attendance. Classes will include both quiet time to spend with your horse to form a connection and active time. Active time includes grooming, haltering, leading, stopping and starting, backing up and challenges such as leading your horse through obstacle courses.
Classes are not so much about horsemanship skills and taking care of a horse as they are about bonding—and building a relationship with your horse based on trust.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF PARTICIPATING IN AN EQUINE-ASSISTED PROGRAM?
Evidence-based studies indicate numerous benefits from similar programs. Benefits include decreased anxiety; better sleep; increased self-awareness of emotions; overall increased sense of well-being; healthier relationships; and improved ability to communicate with friends, family and co-workers.
WHAT TIME COMMITMENT IS REQUIRED?
FREE’s program for First Responders includes a one-hour introductory class followed by five (5) consecutive weekly classes. While the first set of classes scheduled to commence in early May is full, additional classes will be conducted this summer and fall.
WHAT DOES IT COST TO PARTICIPATE IN THE PROGRAM?
There is no cost to participate in this program, as the cost is underwritten by a grant from Larimer County Behavioral Health Services.
HOW DO I SIGN UP TO PARTICIPATE?
For detailed information and referral, First Responders are asked to contact their First Responder Trauma Counselors therapist.