Pilot Evaluation of Equine-Assisted Learning for Children Affected by Trauma with Concurrent Parent Support



Laura Hopson, Kristen McGraw, Candace Hanenberg, Rebecca Bailey, Jaycee Dugard, Alexis Braswell





DOI: https://doi.org/10.58862/YOAR2821

Print ISSN:  2811-6119
Online ISSN: 2811-6127

This study evaluates an equine-assisted learning (EAL) intervention with children who have experienced trauma and their caregivers. Children participated in a seven-week EAL Intervention. All sessions included unmounted work with horses. While children participated in an EAL program, caregivers participated in the "Parent Café", a six-week non-EAL psycho-educational series. Children and their caregivers were administered measures at pretest and posttest. Children (n=104) completed the Children's Attributions and Perceptions Scale (CAPS), and caregivers (n=68) completed the Protective Factors Survey (PFS). Paired samples t-tests were used to examine the data for changes over time. The results indicated significant change on one CAPS scale, with younger children reporting feeling more different from their peers at posttest. Caregivers' scores improved significantly for PFS scales relating to Family Functioning, Nurturing, and Knowledge.