Changing Lives was developed by the BHS, with other professionals, to meet the needs of disengaged young people aged 14 to 16 and those with mental health conditions. However, it can also be used with young people with autism and learning difficulties and has been used with children as young as 9 as well as with post 16 students. New Leaf Triangle staff have received training to become coaches on the programme.
Using horses as the inspiration for change, the programme provides an alternative learning environment to mainstream education. The skills developed through the programme meet the requirements of ongoing education and training, employers and participants.
The British Horse Society is committed to ensuring the programme changes as many lives as possible, and is working in partnership with a variety of organisations, like New Leaf Triangle, to provide an array of education-al and career pathways to support continued development in an environment that celebrates positive change.
The course includes basic horse care and riding and has six generic learning strands going through it: communication, confidence, teamwork, relationships, responsibility and personal achievement. The learning is broken down into ‘Achieve Awards’—10 for Stable Management and 6 for Riding, The achievement of each is recognised by a BHS certificate, so can be highly motivating. In addition there are further awards that can be achieved, for example, for wildlife conservation work or making horse jumps. The course is run in small groups to ensure it is affordable and we are flexible over the number of hours spent on the course each week, so it can be completed in different timescales to suit individual needs. It can also be delivered on a one to one basis if required.