Founded as a grass-roots initiative in 1981 with borrowed horses and four participants, CKRH has grown into a year-round service provider of physical, cognitive, behavioral and social equine therapies for individuals challenged by disabilities. We work with more than 325 (non-duplicated) participants each year who range in age from 3 yrs to senior citizens. Over 75% of our participants are under the age of 18, and we primarily serve Fayette County and its contiguous counties with the help of 28 equine therapists, 7 F/T staff and more than 180 weekly volunteers.
CKRH provides Equine Assisted Activities & Therapies (EAAT), an umbrella term which includes the range of equine activities/ therapies designed for people with disabilities or diverse needs. They include:
Therapeutic Riding (TR), mounted traditional riding disciplines or adaptive riding activities conducted by a certified instructor in private or group lessons. Activities are designed to meet each participant’s needs and may focus on fine/gross motor skills development, balance, strength or coordination. An alternative for individuals unable to ride (due to contraindications) is Therapeutic Driving.
Hippotherapy (HPOT), mounted physical/ occupational/speech therapies that utilize equine movement. Services are provided by a licensed therapist or speech/language pathologist in partnership with Cardinal Hill Rehabilitation Hospital.
Equine Facilitated Mental Health (EFMH), non-mounted equine assisted activities and therapies with a focus on mental health issues. Led by a licensed/credentialed mental health professional in conjunction with a credentialed equine professional, examples include psychotherapy, marriage/family counseling and bereavement therapy. CKRH partners with KY National Guard to provide PTSD recovery support to military veterans; Bluegrass Rape Crisis Center to provide psycho-educational services to adult survivors of sexual trauma; and Hospice of the Bluegrass with bereavement retreats for youngsters who have lost an immediate family member.
Equine Facilitated Learning (EFL), non-mounted equine activities which incorporate equine/human interaction to promote emotional growth and develop life/social skills. Our primary partner in this effort is the Fayette County Public Schools STABLES program, for students in grades 7-12 who struggle with academice or vocational skills, and need additional support in a more individualized setting.
Therapeutic Horsemanship (TH), mounted and non-mounted equine activities which develop skills in horse care, handling or riding. Participants’ equine skills progress while improving cognitive, emotional, social and behavioral abilities. Activities include Horse-Master lessons, US Pony Club curriculum and occasional horse show competitions.
In addition to our partners noted above, CKRH provides clinical/intern opportunities for University of Kentucky, Eastern KY University, Asbury University, Midway College and Georgetown College.
We seek to raise funds for our Therapy Scholarship Fund (to help cash-strapped families keep their child in therapy), Horse Care (to keep our beloved equine therapists fed, warm and healthy) and the Tech Upgrade project (software and computer security upgrades to help us meet the growing demands of multiple programs occuring simultaneously on any given day.)