Horses are magical, say two people who are part of an equine-assisted learning program run by Simple Changes Therapeutic Riding Center. Since 2017, the center has worked with Goodwin Living to introduce its horses to senior residents with cognitive impairment and anxiety. The collaboration began when social worker Barbara Bolin, a lifelong rider and horse owner, reached out to Corliss Wallingford, the center's executive director. "These times of engagement can divert a person from feeling isolated, lonely or upset," Bolin says. The nonprofit, which serves people of all ages who have physical, cognitive and emotional disabilities, has five full-time horses and a sixth in training. Some can ride the horses, with assistants walking alongside. Families pay for residents to take part, but Goodwin has applied for grants to expand the program to other assisted-living homes and to help subsidize people who cannot afford it.

Read Full Story