Pony Power for Heroes
Equine Assisted Activities for Veterans and their Families
– Experience the Difference Time Spent With a Horse Can Make in Your Life
Pony Power Therapies offers unique horse-centered programming free of charge to those who have served in our country’s armed services. Veterans can experience a variety of physical, psychological and social benefits by using these sensitive, no-nonsense animals as a learning tool in unmounted and mounted experiential learning activities. Every activity – from simple grooming to fun team challenges – is intended to empower participants and help them rediscover their resiliency.
Who can participate?
Veterans of any age can participate in the program, but those returning from Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom were the impetus for this initiative spearheaded by Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship (PATH) International, the industry’s premier accrediting body.
Each summer, Pony Power also offers a 4-day extended day experience – Operation Pony Power – to children whose parent(s) are serving or have served in the military. Because of the inclusive nature of Pony Power programming, military children can enjoy riding and learning about horses in a setting that’s accessible and safe for those with and without special needs.
What can you expect?
The equine-assisted activities are tailored to address specific issues faced by wounded and traumatized military personnel and assist in making the transition to civilian life. Activities are customized for each group of participants, taking into account physical disabilities and/or limitations. No prior horse experience is necessary. Sessions are intended to be fun yet thought provoking.
• Possess a highly developed sense of perception
• Assume specific roles within a herd
• Move when feeling threatened because they are prey animals
• Show their emotions and needs honestly without any hidden agendas
HORSES HELP PEOPLE TO:
• Experience interactive patterns that will enhance relationships
• Establish clear boundaries with others for personal empowerment
• Understand the impact of verbal and nonverbal “messages”
• Develop stress management skills
How do you get started?
Pony Power for Heroes is FREE to veterans and consists of three 90-minute weekly sessions. For more information or to join the next group of veterans, call 201-934-1001 or submit a query below.
All Pony Power for Heroes sessions are led by a licensed clinical social worker, who is also certified by the Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association (EAGALA), and a PATH-certified instructor.
Disabled Veterans Charitable Service Trust supports our programming for veterans.
Interested in Riding?
For veterans who incurred service-connected injuries since Sept. 11, 2001, financial assistance for a mounted program is available through a partnership with PATH Intl and the Wounded Warrior Project.