About Us

We believe that each person interacts and connects in a unique way. Our mission is to help each find his or her own path.

Our Story

Helping Our Riders Succeed in Education (H.O.R.S.E) was established as a 501(c)(3) organization in 2003 by Jodie Rose and Catherine Porter . The H.O.R.S.E. Center provided services on a part time basis until 2015. With the building of an enclosed facility, H.O.R.S.E could start providing services full-time. The H.O.R.S.E Center strives to enhance individual, family and group functioning by providing opportunities to develop skills for solving problems, overcoming obstacles, and reaching individual or group goals. We also seek to help those who have learning impairments, are physically or mentally challenged, “at risk” youth, or those who need the help of caring individuals with the aid of horses. We offer individual as well as group lessons, to encourage teamwork, communication or to be determined needs.

H.O.R.S.E provides Equine Facilitated Learning (EFL), Equine-Assisted Psychotherapy (EAP), and Therapeutic Riding (TR) contract equine services to professional therapeutic providers and corporations. Over 75 percent of our clients are between the ages of 5 and 18. Twenty-five percent are between 18 and 99. In 2016, we conducted over 2,000 hours of year-round programming. Working with other community-based organizations, we offer a holistic and flexible array of services designed to address the physical and mental health care needs of our clients.

During the sessions, a three-member team consisting of the licensed mental health professional, an equine professional and the equine itself concentrate on improving the client’s physical, sensory, emotional, cognitive, and/or psychological deficiencies. Nationwide, equine-assisted therapies have become a preferred form of treatment for many physical, behavioral and mental health challenges. In addition, the rhythmic movements of the horse can be therapeutic for clients with muscular or speech limitations. Horses are non-judgmental; they allow the client a safe space to become more resilient, serene and empowered.

Why Horses?

Horses have unique organizational cultures. They live in herds providing vast opportunities for metaphor
Distinct personalities, attitudes, and moods – what works with one may not work with another
Horses have exceptional ability to read non-verbal communication- people must change their own thoughts, attitudes, and behaviors to get different results
Size and strength – opportunity to overcome fear and develop confidence
Social Structure – Herd (family), bands (peer relationship), and individuals
Structure and substructures are based on “rank” and require boundaries – the understanding and enforcement of boundaries are key to emotional and physical safety
Develop behaviors to deal with the demands of living in the herd/family structure

Meet Our Equine Therapy Team:

Jodie Rose

Jodie Rose

Equine Specialist

  • Executive Director The H.O.R.S.E. Center  2002-present
  • Program Director The H.O.R.S.E. Center   2002-present
  • Training/Horse Selection Team Member  2002-present
  • BS in Animal Science from Tarleton State University 2000
  • MS in Agriculture from Tarleton State University 2001
  • Both degrees with an emphasis in Equines and Equine Therapy Management
  • While attending Tarleton worked with the TREAT 1995-2001 program (Tarleton Equine Assisted Therapeutic Riding)
  • Licensed Nursing Home Administrator 2005-2008
  • EAGALA Certified- Equine Specialist 2010
  • Currently pursuing a MS in Marriage and Family Therapy
 
Debbie Tabb

Debbie Tabb

Equine Specialist

  • Volunteer The H.O.R.S.E. Center 2009- present
  • BS in Home Economics with a Specialization in Child Development from Texas Tech  1985
  • Teaching Certification from Stephen F Austin 1986
  • MISD Teacher 1987-2018
  • EAGALA Certified- Equine Specialist 2015
  • Level 1 Equine Facilitated Learning and Coaching (EFLC) Certified
 
Russell Porter

Russell Porter

Equine Specialist

  • CFO, Volunteer Coordinator The H.O.R.S.E. Center 2004-present
  • Training/Horse Selection Team Member 2004-present
  • United States Navy (Sonar Tech Submarines) 1993-1997
  • Equine Trainer, Barn Manager Bluebonnet Farms  1997-2004   Stephenville, TX
  • EAGALA Certified- Equine Specialist 2015
Our Equines:

Our Equines Having Fun!:

CARING, COMPASSIONATE HELP

"My horse wants to know me and he loves me just like I am. He is stubborn like me, but he teaches me to be calm, not get mad and to be nice. Buddy taught me to keep trying and not give up on him or on people. Because of Buddy, I am able to love and be loved. I am now adopted and I have a mom and a place to call home. Thank you Buddy" - J'Von , Age 7

“I have been witness to these horses helping me deal with life’s problems."
- Volunteer

“LJ is on the autism spectrum. He was also born with Chromosome 4 and has now been diagnosed with ADHD. LJ has difficulties with self-regulation. He would have several meltdowns a week in school and home. Since he started Equine Therapy in November his issues with self-regulation have decreased greatly. Jodie has taught him Tai’Chi movements on the horses to help him self-regulate. LJ has learned how to use these methods at home , in the classroom and in dance. His teachers at school and his dance instructors have been amazed at how much his self-regulation has improved. Equine therapy has been a lifesaver!” – Parent

“Ella has moderate sensory issues and was born with FAS. Ella was having trouble with potty training and sensory issues. Within two months of starting Equine therapy she was completely potty trained. Her teachers have noted that she is more calm and self-requlated. Equine therapy has helped with her self-confidence. She loves it!” - Parent

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