Equest - Hooves for Heroes

Veterans Program

 Equest's HOOVES FOR HEROES empowers veterans and military families to take charge of their civilian transitions and assume new roles as civic leaders.

Thanks to generous grant funding, charitable donations and underwriting, our Equest Veterans Program services are offered at no cost to active duty service personnel, members of the Guard or Reserve, honorably discharged veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces, and their immediate family members. Equest's programs are individually tailored to meet the unique needs of the client.

Our goal is to leverage the power of the horses  to ease the participant's transition to civilian life and help them realize their potential as civic assets and community leaders. Among the benefits:

  • Improved self-awareness
  • More effective communication skills
  • Healthier relationships
  • Enhanced emotional regulation
  • Greater self-confidence
  • Fellowship and camaraderie
  • Opportunities to serve the community
This program is supported by a grant from the Texas Veterans Commission Fund for Veterans’ Assistance.  The Fund for Veterans’ Assistance provides grants to organizations serving  veterans and their families.

The Five Components of Therapeutic Horsemanship offered:

  • Horsemanship 101 - Participants spend an afternoon learning the basics of ground handling plus enjoy fun and insightful team building activities -as part of the herd. It is a family friendly introduction to the power of horses.
  • Therapeutic  RidingEquest Veterans Program HOOVES FOR HEROES participants join with fellow Veterans and military spouses to learn mounted equestrian skill development and progression  while building meaningful relationships with their horses and each other.  Most volunteers assisting with this  program are also Veterans or Armed Forces family members.
  • Carriage Driving - Clients learn to drive a horse drawn carriage which results in motor-sensory skill development and strengthening. Drivers master this task with precision and purpose.
  • Hippotherapy - Hippotherapy is a unique form of physical, occupational and speech therapy using the movement of the horse to accomplish therapy treatment goals.
  • Equine Facilitated Counseling (EFC)Many of our clients find EFC uniquely suited for achieving enhanced emotional wellness and a more satisfying life. Working with a licensed mental health professional, an equine specialist and one or more horses,  clients work towards their goals. Many develop a deeper self-awareness, improved self-efficacy, richer interpersonal relationships and greater resilience in the face of life's challenges.
Texas Veterans + Family Alliance Grant

Grant Amount: $206,918

Program Description:
Project maintains and expands equine facilitated counseling, equine facilitated learning, physical/occupational therapies, therapeutic horsemanship, and individual and group volunteer opportunities for veterans and their families as they transition back into civilian life.

Program Partners:
Honor Courage Commitment, Inc., Adaptive Training Foundation, The Mission Continues, Carry the Load, Attitudes & Attire, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, Cohen Family Clinic at Metrocare, Farmers Assisting Returning Military