More than 50 people enjoyed the superb weather and pleasant surroundings to attend Horses For Hope's Demonstration today.

Representatives of Department of Health & Human Services, Rumbalara Aboriginal Co-Operative, Berry Street, Goulburn Valley Health Care, Courts Victoria, Foster Carers Association, Goulburn Valley Centre Against Sexual Assault, Salvation Army, Latrobe University, Family Care, Rushworth College and a number of interested members of the public attended.

Director Bill Saunders opened proceedings by outlining the progress we had made in the 5 months since commencing in July 2019.

  • Succesfully established as a registered charity with tax deductible status for donations.
  • Already recognised by philanthropic foundations and receiving grants.
  • Developing plans to open a second location near Melton in Melbourne's west.

Experienced counsellor and Director Anne Riddock talked a little about our therapeutic process and introduced our founder and Director Colin Emonson.

Colin went into more detail about our unique narrative based equine assisted therapy process and then supervised a demonstration with Emily, a 9 year old who is nearing the end of a 10 session program.

Emily impressed everyone with her confident handling of Peanut, Horses For Hope's resident pony for beginners.

And then to show how much she had learned Emily was asked if she would like to work with Phoenix, a much bigger and quite traumatised horse that she had never worked with before.

Emily accepted the challenge which required her to apply all her skills to make a connection with Phoenix that enabled him to feel safe and calm and ensure that he did not become alarmed by the large crowd.

This she did to the extent that everyone present could see how Phoenix responded positively to Emily's confident handling.

A most instructive demonstration of Horses For Hope's capacity to teach young people how to handle a stressful situation with calmness and poise.