At Falcon Ridge Ranch, the equine experience is not just an enrichment activity, it is the backbone of the program. The horses, who kept on site at the ranch, provide the girls with opportunities to learn how to care for others, develop boundaries, and build relationships. Caring for and interacting with the horses is part of the daily schedule and routine for the girls at the ranch.
The horses can help provide a bridge that serves to reach the girls that might be temporarily unreachable by traditional therapeutic means. The girls participate in both individual and group equine therapy sessions. The girls also participate in other equine assisted learning activities, both individually and in groups, which may be inherently therapeutic, but are not necessarily done as therapy sessions. Falcon Ridge Ranch also teaches basic horsemanship skills, so the girls get some time in the saddle.
By working with the horses and learning to tune into the subtle, or sometimes not so subtle, messages they send through body language and demeanor, the girls can learn to do the same with family and peers. Developing trust and boundaries with the horses helps the girls learn to practice these things with other people. One young lady says of the horse she worked with at Falcon Ridge Ranch, “I’ll never forget the things we went through together.”