• "Horses change lives. They give our young people confidence and self-esteem. They provide peace and tranquility to troubled souls. They give us hope!" Toni Robinson

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Equine Youth Development Programme | Montrose Foundation

The Equine Youth Development Programme uses equine-assisted intervention to teach children at risk how to address current dysfunctional behavior, handling challenging life situations and empowering them to make positive life choices.

Why Horses?

Horses are able to mirror human body language accurately for they have similar behaviors with humans, such as social and responsive behaviors. They can reflect the emotional states of humans and offers observable, unfiltered feedback.

Equine Youth Development Programme consists of an  8 week course in which the  participants are invited to first engage in the arena, where the equine specialist focuses on equine-assisted intervention activities with the horses. This process facilitates the identification of potential development areas. The programme also includes an additional 8 sessions in the sharing hub to further integrate the arena processes.

This programme does not involve horse riding or require any experience in horsemanship.

Equine Youth Development Programme

The 8 week Programme covers a range of Personal and Social Objectives for each participant, including:

  • Week 1  Building trust and orientation
  • Week 2  Self-awareness
    •    (Who am I? Where do I fit in?)
  • Week 3  Self-worth and Discrimination
  • Week 4  Attitude and Respect
  • Week 5  Substance Abuse Education
  • Week 6  Choices
  • Week 7  Motivation to Change
  • Week 8  Affirmation and Moving Forward

Programme Duration

  • 2 hours per week
  • Group size: 8

Programme Cost:

  • R 10,000 funds 1 youth
  • R 80,000 funds a youth group (8 youth)

Each session is facilitated by a professional equine specialist as well as experienced group facilitators to ensure physical, mental wellbeing and safety. Our facilitators are passionate about children and creating an optimal learning environment for them.

Head Facilitator:

An experienced coach and group facilitator processes the equine-assisted intervention sessions with the group and integrates this into the personal development programme.

Equine Specialist:

An experienced horse specialist focuses on interpreting the horses’ feedback to human interaction and ensures equine-related safety during sessions.

Substance Abuse Facilitator:

A substance abuse facilitator focuses on educating youth regarding the myths and pitfalls of drug abuse by using rap music, art, dance  and various elements of their personal journeys as a vehicle for change.

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2016 EYDP Target

To date a total of 511 youth have been enrolled in the Equine Youth Programme.

Our aim is to provide the EYDP to an additional 112 youth in the form of 14 groups in 2016.

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