NEAT finds new home

Published: Sep. 7, 2016 at 6:05 PM PDT
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Nevada Equine Assisted Therapy instructor and co-founder Laurie Roberts is helping her student relax on a horse by breathing. She too can breathe a sigh of relief.

The program, otherwise known as NEAT, was given three months to move from its former home on the University of Nevada Campus.

The program helps children and adults with physical, emotional, or behavioral issues with the help of horses.

With 7 horses, tack, and other equipment, the forced move--with no landing spot--started to get stressful. Our story back in March provided some leads, but nothing quite came together.

Then at almost the last minute, Equest Training Center in Washoe Valley welcomed the program with open arms.

“We were panicky, but in a very serendipitous way, we found several options. But this has been the most incredible experience for us,” says Roberts.

Brothers Logan and Angel Faz say they like the new location for their riding lessons. Like all students there, the two have to learn to groom and tack the horses up before ever getting on their backs. But even then they didn't get to automatically ride the horse.

“I did not ride before. I learned a few ground games before I got a chance to ride,” says Angel.

The program hopes to teach these students to ride, of course, but the horses teach much more than that. Patience, following directions, responsibility, to name just a few attributes.

“The first time I actually started riding, it was actually a little bit, I was actually a little bit scared. But after a while. I've actually been very used to it,” says Logan.

The horses have settled in to a new home; students and instructors are literally and figuratively back in the saddle.

If you'd like to know more about NEAT,