Advanced Peer Counselors learn about equine therapy

APC goes to Stand in Balance in Westlake

Advanced+Peer+Counselors+took+a+field+trip+to+Stand+in+Balance+in+Westlake+to+learn+about+equine+therapy.+Equines+includes+horses+and+donkeys.
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Advanced Peer Counselors learn about equine therapy

Advanced Peer Counselors took a field trip to Stand in Balance in Westlake to learn about equine therapy. Equines includes horses and donkeys.

Advanced Peer Counselors took a field trip to Stand in Balance in Westlake to learn about equine therapy. Equines includes horses and donkeys.

Photo Courtesy of Janet Svoboda

Advanced Peer Counselors took a field trip to Stand in Balance in Westlake to learn about equine therapy. Equines includes horses and donkeys.

Photo Courtesy of Janet Svoboda

Photo Courtesy of Janet Svoboda

Advanced Peer Counselors took a field trip to Stand in Balance in Westlake to learn about equine therapy. Equines includes horses and donkeys.

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Advanced Peer Counselors took a field trip to Stand in Balance in Westlake Village Friday, March 29 to learn about equine therapy. Equine therapy refers to therapy involving donkeys and horses.

According to CRC Health, the goal of equine therapy is to “help the patient develop needed skills and attributes, such as accountability, responsibility, self-confidence, problem-solving skills, and self-control. Equine therapy also provides an innovative [environment] in which the therapist and the patient can identify and address a range of emotional and behavioral challenges.”

Oak Park High School counselor and Mind Matters teacher Janet Svoboda wrote to the Talon that the field trip was funded by Ventura County Office of Education since they pay for field trips in Career Technical Education (CTE) classes.

“Since equine therapy is something that many people don’t know about as an effective therapy to treat trauma, depression, anxiety and family dysfunction, Ms. Ross and [I] choose this trip,” Svoboda wrote. “We wanted our students to experience professionals in the mental health field.”

Logan Prince, Advanced Peer Counselor and junior, wrote to the Talon that he learned horses and donkeys are honest animals.

“As Advanced Peer Counselors we have to be able to understand the way in which someone is behaving and the emotions they are experiencing so to respond accordingly with the appropriate counseling tools,” Prince wrote. “Equine therapy allowed us to understand the responses of the equines, which translates to the way in which our peers behave and act.”

Advanced Peer Counseling co-President and senior Danielle Gould wrote to the Talon that the advanced peer counselors played with the animals and learned about teamwork.

“The counselors chose this field trip for us because it was a fun experience, but also a learning opportunity to show us different types of therapy and counseling techniques,” Gould wrote.

Emily Warren, Advanced Peer Counselor and sophomore, wrote to the Talon that they focused on trust exercises with the animals.

“We will be applying our skills of earning trust with the students on campus. It was a very new experience for me and I’m glad that I was involved with this. I never knew how effective equine therapy could be,” Warren wrote.

Advanced Peer Counselors plan on using techniques on getting to work on gaining trust with students.

“If anything, I feel that we learned a lot about ourselves as people and how we chose to react when put in different situations,” Gould wrote. “I think being aware of this will help us in future encounters with counseling students and just life skills in general.”

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