Horsing Around And Improving Lives

Wednesday, April 2nd 2008, 6:36 pm
By: News On 6

You might call it horse help for young people in need.  The Tulsa Boys Home has been around since 1918.  Its mission is to help boys facing emotional and behavioral problems with education, counseling and life skills.  Now, the home is just about finished with a new $1.5 million equestrian center.  News On 6 anchor Craig Day reports the facility and the equine program are changing lives.

When Anthony came to the Tulsa Boys Home, he didn't know anything about horses, didn't even want to be around them.  You can't tell it now.

"I just enjoy it so much, to be able to get on a horse and just ride," said 17-year-old Anthony.

Anthony is one of the boys taking part in the Tulsa Boys Home therapeutic equine program.  Now the program is housed under one roof in a brand new equestrian center.

"It's not very easy to find the kind of support that we have financially to get something like this built, so we're very fortunate," said Equine manager Ty Holland.

The $1.4 million indoor arena and center are part of a program to help kids with behavioral or emotional problems.

"Studies have shown that this type of therapy, it works.  If you can hook a boy up with a horse and get a partnership going, I've just seen dramatic, dramatic changes," said Ty Holland.

Equine manager Ty Holland says the program teaches responsibility, communication skills, and improves self confidence.

17 Year old Scott says he once was angry and frustrated with the world.  The horses changed that.

"Help us recognize what's going on with our life and helping us out with our treatment and everything," said Scott.

For the past couple of years, the training and instruction through the Tulsa Boys Home Equine Program has had to be done outside, so they were limited in what they could because of the weather.  The new indoor arena changes that.

It will give them more opportunities for hands on instruction, where the boys can learn a lot about horses, and even more about themselves.

The Tulsa Boys Home still has to raise about $490,000 to pay for the new arena.

They're holding a big fundraiser called "Run for the Roses" at the fairgrounds May 3rd.  It's a big Kentucky Derby party.  You can call 245-0231 to get more information or to make a donation.

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