On 05 July 2018 we confiscated a little chestnut mare in Stock Road. Our selfless staff loaded her in the horse box among increasingly threatening circumstances despite the community being rather volatile and threatening retribution.

There was no choice – the pony was in very bad condition and was severely neglected. She was harnessed to a cart, with unsuitable harnessing and was being driven around by an under-aged, unlicensed driver. It was a very easy decision to impose our zero-tolerance policy.

Two years and a lot of TLC later, we can say that she has found her “happy ever after” when she was adopted in July this year by the Equinox Trust. This NGO offers Equine Assisted Therapy to those members of society who would not normally be able to afford such services. Through horses, they heal humans.

Fire Girl, now renamed, Spirit Girl will be joining the other equine therapists at Equinox and despite her own (or maybe because of it) hardships, will be helping humans.

We wish her good luck in her new capacity as therapist and will keep you updated on how she settles into her new home.

Fire Girl chose us.

“We came the Cart Horse R&R with an open mind. We simply allowed the horses and ponies to come into a space with our intention of looking for kindness and a willingness to partner with humans. We were delighted by many little souls that came to greet us through the fences, but then, one little pony wouldn’t leave our side. She followed us as we proceeded around the grounds meeting the others. She kept drawing us back to her. As we left the farm she stood in the farthest part of the camp nearest to the exit gate, watching our car leave. Big trusting eyes, gentle touches of the muzzle, I knew we no longer had a choice.

Fire Girl it was! Spirit Girl is settling in well, as she is adjusting, it is wonderful to witness that she can very quickly bring herself back to a calm energy if anything has caught her attention. She is very willing to try any new ideas, wanting to listen and partner with her human. She has buddied up with our biggest mare, and it seems they have adopted each other. She has been asking to come into sessions and has greeted clients over the fence. She experienced her first group session on the 20th of August with a women’s group and she was a natural! She often chooses being with a human over a horse.

The Equinox Trust is a non-profit organisation offering empowerment and support programmes to communities in need through experiences with horses. The Equinox Trust has designed specific programmes in the areas of women survivor’s of trauma and abuse, carers and mental health professionals, youth at risk, and the Valkenberg Psychiatric Programme.

Participants in the programmes work with the horses through the modality of Equine Assisted Therapy and Learning to achieve the programme goals and objectives.”

Written by Sarah Garland