The OWL Equine Program has partnered with the ULM (University of Louisiana at Monroe) Gerontology Department, the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP), and Lincoln Parish Truancy Assessment Services in a truancy prevention program. They have just wrapped up the program in which they are targeting local public school youth who struggle with truancy, and as a result often have trouble in school.
Each month the same 18 youth visit the OWL and are paired with adult mentors from RSVP. The youth learn horsemanship skills and participate in various equine assisted therapy activities. Working with horses promotes respect, responsibility, goal setting, patience, and compassion, as well as helps the youth to address specific issues that may be affecting their school performance.
Program goals include: building confidence, setting and achieving goals, following directions, and asking for help. This program will resume in September with a new group of youth.