Equine Assisted Youth Peer Support (EAYPS)

Our Equine-Assisted Youth Peer Support program (EAYPS) partners youth ages 10-17 with horses over a course of 6 weeks in a horsemanship program. Twelve core values are emphasized in the relationship with horses. 


Equine Assisted Youth Peer Support


Our Equine Assisted Youth Peer Support (EAYPS) program supports youth ages 11-17 through a partnership with Thurston County Juvenile Court. The 6-week courses incorporate horsemanship activities and peer support. Our staff include certified peer counselors and a mental health counselor to fulfill the therapeutic needs of each participant and promote recovery through a trauma informed model. 

In our program, youth work through curriculum that is designed around twelve core values: honesty, hope, trust, courage, self-reflection, willingness, humility, forgiveness, accountability, perseverance, gratitude, and community. These core values are reinforced with a range of hands-on activities that teach the youth the significance of each value, learned metaphorically through interactions with the horse. The participants work in a group setting to apply lessons learnt through the horse-human relationship and apply them to everyday life and academic situations. 

Participants are referred to our program through the Thurston County Juvenile Court system; referrals from outside partners will only be accepted if the court does not fill all available slots.