Stable Moments is coming to the UK for the first time! Thanks to a Wee Grant from the Robertson Trust, we will be piloting the Stable Moments, an innovative equine assisted mentorship program especially for care-experienced young people. Pairing community mentorship with equine-assisted learning can heal trauma and promote resilience in children with complex trauma needs.
According to the Scottish Public Health Network ACE report, children who end up doing well despite experiences of adversity usually have at least one supportive relationship with a supportive parent, caregiver, or other adults. This appears to buffer them from development disruption (the kind caused by toxic stress) and builds resilience – the ability to bounce back from serious difficulties.
At Stable Moments, each young person is matched with a volunteer mentor and a rescued therapy horse, meeting weekly for the duration of an entire school year to take part in fun horsemanship activities on the ground to build trust, boost communication and enhance coping skills. With the support of their horse, they develop a relationship with a trusted adult. A mentor who can take one hour a week out of their busy schedule to show up, be engaged and provide a stable moment for a child in an unsettled world promotes a feeling of "I Matter!" Children who grow up in the care system are used to constant change and interactions with a community that often doesn't understand them. Providing some stability, a positive role model and a trauma-informed approach creates the perfect environment for these children to develop the life skills necessary to make healthy transitions into adulthood.