Horses have a demanding job at McKenna Farms Therapy Services. They help youth with special needs, ages 5 to 21, to achieve their full potential through participation in the hippotherapy, therapeutic riding, and equestrian team programs. McKenna Farms Therapy Services is a non-profit organization in Dallas, Georgia that serves 500 children per week with the help of 23 therapists, dozens of volunteers, and 16 horses. When the four-legged therapists encounter their own occupational challenges, Parelli Natural Horsemanship comes to the rescue. The Parelli Foundation’s $2,000 grant to the McKenna Farms Therapy Services facilitated the staff members’ natural horsemanship education. This March, Ashley Boswell, a 1* Licensed Parelli Professional from Raleigh, North Carolina, visited the farm and provided a 2-day workshop to the 10 staff members who most closely work with the horses. The training was a combination of classroom time, groundwork, and riding. The staff members learned the Seven Games and the four phases, analyzed horsenalities, and studied horse development. By the end of the 2 days they expanded their knowledge, improved their skills,
and gained a better understanding of how to better support their equine co-therapists on a daily basis.
With Parelli Natural Horsemanship and the Parelli Foundation, the horses at McKenna Farms are on their way to achieving their full potential while providing such an invaluable service.