Background and Aims of the Young Carers Programme:
During the current pandemic, life has been particularly hard for our young carers. Where they might ordinarily have respite in going to school and having fun with their peers, they have had to isolate as those family members they care for are particularly vulnerable at this time.
Horserenity CIC aims to provide a safe environment where young carers can explore and express themselves. We have written a program that will allow small groups of young carers to find some time for themselves; express freely how these past months have made them feel; and work with the horses in the paddocks to achieve a sense of calm. In working with the horses and other young carers, we hope to also provide them with a space in which they can relax, reflect and smile. We will equip them with a ‘mindfulness toolkit’ that they can take away and use when things get tough. We will provide opportunities to learn new skills and look at how horses communicate and how we can learn and let go. There will be time for physical expression, discussion, grooming, round pen work and fun.
The Shape of the Programme:
A 6 session programme consisting of 6 hours a week, split over two days, including hands on work with the horses, group work, mindfulness and time for reflection.
Each program will be open to 8 young carers and lead by two qualified facilitators. It will commence at 9.30am and finish at 12.30pm. It will run on Wednesdays and Saturdays. We will have two breaks during the three-hour session where participants can relax and enjoy the paddocks and we will provide refreshments.
By the end of the programme:
The participant can identify a situation where they felt confident and where they felt a lack of confidence and talk about how they behaved in those situations.
The participant can outline how their behaviour and beliefs can influence the ways others perceive us.
The participant can identify social situations that make them uncomfortable and discuss the resulting behaviour and how to reflect on it.
The participant can identify fight or flight triggers for themselves and the resulting stress levels.
The participant can explore their energy and recognise the physical factors.
The participant can identify techniques to reduce stress in a variety of situations.
The participant can identify a short-term goal and an action plan to help them meet that goal.
The participant can communicate and work in a group and take comfort from their world.
Horses live in the moment and are beings that look beyond the surface to the real soul within. They can unlock our inner selves and assist us in being true to ourselves without fear of judgment. We will be facilitating interactions between the herd and the individual young carers and giving them space and time to just ‘be’.