Recognized USEF Community Outreach Organizations are united by their standards in their mission to provide equine-based learning opportunities and to support the positive impact horses can have within their local communities. COOs are listed below in alphabetical order. Additional COOs will be added as they are approved. Disclaimer: USEF’s Community Outreach Organizations Directory provides a list of organizations that have met the standards of eligibility including in equity, mission, and welfare. Inclusion on this list does not imply any endorsement of the organization. It simply indicates that the organization has stated that it meets certain eligibility criteria.
Beachwood Center for Wellbeing (Charlestown, R.I.)
Beachwood Center for Wellbeing provides services and training in Integrative Equine Therapy, a unique protocol for treating anxiety, grief, trauma, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and other stress-related illnesses. We serve both paying and non-paying clients; our target is 50% paid and 50% non-pay. All veterans, and community referrals from ministries and social services, are treated without charge. With one of our founders a naval officer, the Center has focused on veterans with PTSD. This work has proved to be particularly successful, and we continue to expand our Veteran outreach. The Center has recently expanded to include two locations located in Wellington, FL and Coatsville, PA.
City to Saddle - Mesa Farm (Rutland, Mass.)
"To Give a Child A Leg Up!" That’s our motto, and has been since the launch of City to Saddle well over a decade ago. It underscores our mission of providing equestrian opportunities for under-served children to experience the joys and challenges of equestrian activities. Our programs enrich the lives of boys and girls in so many ways by fostering confidence, selffulfillment, and joy. From the very beginning, City to Saddle has engaged with a diverse youth population, recognizing the incredible value that equine relationships can hold for children of all backgrounds when barriers to access are removed. Since 2004, we have enrolled hundreds of boys and girls from Boston’s inner city, Worcester, and other urban/metro areas into a variety of equestrian programs at barns located throughout Massachusetts.
Cloverleaf Equine Center (Clifton, Va.)
The Cloverleaf Equine Center, formerly known as the Northern Viginia Therapeutic Riding Program, helps each individual realize their highest potential by providing equine-assisted activities to people with disabilities, youth-at-risk, recovering military personnel, and others in need in an inclusive, community setting. Cloverleaf Equine Center helps to build and focus on individuals’ abilities, rather than disabilities, by providing high-quality therapeutic riding, physical therapy and occupational therapy. Students improve fitness level and mobility through programs by gaining core strength, muscle control and balance. Working closely with horses and volunteers inspires students to build self-esteem and further socialization, and also helps to provide both students and their families with a sense of community and belonging. Cloverleaf Equine Center is committed to building sustainable, inclusive, equitable, and resilient communities.
Cranberry Sunset Farm (Marstons Mills, Mass.)
Cranberry Sunset Farm rescues animals and provides a learning environment for children with extra needs. We offer alternative therapy for the children and their families at the farm. We consider ourselves a boutique in the learning world. We can work in the moment and individualize a child’s needs for that moment. Our sensory trails offer multiple therapies simultaneously, and the learning that happens is very profound compared to that in a classroom because all the senses are activated during the learning process, while the child is out in nature, riding a horse, and following instructions.
Detroit Horse Power (Detroit, Mich.)
Detroit Horse Power was founded with the mission of expanding opportunity for under-resourced urban youth through riding and caring for horses. Since 2015, we have brought hundreds of Detroit students from under-represented communities to partner barns outside the city. In our unique program, students learn riding, horse care, and the social-emotional skills we all gain from partnering with horses - Perseverance, Empathy, Responsible risk-taking, Confidence, and Self-control (PERCS). We recognize our full impact will come from making these youth development opportunities accessible within Detroit’s city limits in an environment that reflects our students’ voice and identity, and that enhances the neighborhoods our students grow up in by turning vacant land into a community asset. We are now track to open a transformational new urban equestrian center on a 14-acre demolished Detroit school site.
Ebony Horsewomen (Hartford, Conn.)
Based in the heart of Connecticut's capital city, the mission of Ebony Horsewomen is to use horses, Equine Assisted Therapy, and Equine Assisted Psychotherapy to empower lives of youth, families, and veterans toward a path to successful lives, families and community. We strive to build leaders, deter destructive behaviors, and increase educational and career endeavors. And, for the overall betterment of the youth that we serve, we shall include engagement in community development activities directed toward economic development in an effort to help improve the physical, economic or social environment with attention to the needs of youth and their families.
GallopNYC (New York, N.Y.)
GallopNYC is a nonprofit organization that provides equine-centered therapeutic programs to children and adults with disabilities, including veterans and at-risk youth. We run the largest and most multi-faceted therapeutic riding program in New York City, providing therapeutic riding to urban children who otherwise would not have the chance to interact with horses. Nearly 12% of city residents live with disabilities that present developmental, physical, social, and/or emotional challenges. We aim to serve a socioeconomically and racially diverse group of riders. GallopNYC makes the benefits of therapeutic riding available by subsidizing, on average, a third of the cost of each lesson for all riders, and we offer need-based fee waivers so riders can participate, regardless of financial means.
Learn more at www.gallopnyc.org and follow GallopNYC on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.
Great Oak Equine Assisted Programs (Aiken, S.C.)
Great Oak provides equine assisted activities that promote the physical, emotional, and psychological health of individuals with special needs. Our programs are the catalyst for unbridled personal growth and awareness. We share our knowledge to empower individuals and their families. Through the current service offerings of therapeutic riding, equine-assisted learning, community based instruction, and Special Olympics training, Great Oak provides over 300+ lessons each and every month.
Heartland Therapeutic Riding Inc (Overland Park, Kan.)
Each week, 95 children and adults from around the Kansas City area attend Heartland Therapeutic Riding Inc (HTR) to experience the benefits of interacting with horses and achieve goals they once only dreamed about attaining. The horses introduce our participants to a new world, a world that’s full possibilities and hope! Our participants live with physical, emotional and/or intellectual challenges. Some disabilities are clear and evident, but some are not. Participants make physical and emotional strides during their lessons that are taught by instructors who are focused on what they can accomplish, not on their limitations. Group lessons are held weekly with a supportive group of volunteers to ensure safety and encourage team building.
Horse SenseAbility (Sherborn, Mass.)
Horse SenseAbility is a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping underserved and at-risk children and young adults develop life skills by
learning about, caring for and being with horses in a peaceful, rural setting. The organization grew out of founder Polly Kornblith’s passions for working with kids at-risk and for being with animals. Kornblith combined her love of horses with her interest in the healing power of horses for those who have experienced trauma and, in 2018, launched Horse SenseAbility in a brand new facility specifically designed and built for therapeutic riding and horsemanship activities.
Horses N Heroes (Ocala, Fla.)
Horses N Heroes is dedicated to providing an equine learning and mentoring experience for young girls who come from families with extreme financial constraints. There is no fee for participation in the program. These girls are given the opportunity to bond with horses and through that experience, they gain self-esteem. The girls also learn about responsibility, teamwork, kind-heartedness, commitment and much more. The girls are taught all aspects of horsemanship including but not limited to riding, grooming, feeding and caring for the donated horses. Students also are given the opportunity to show at local horse shows.
Horses of Hope (Isabela, Puerto Rico)
Horses of Hope / Caballos de Esperanza Inc., is a therapeutic riding center, located in beautiful Isabela, Puerto Rico.
Our mission is to engage the therapeutic power of our horses to nurture the special abilities of people with disabilities, help heal those suffering from trauma, and empower our clients to improve the quality of their lives, their families' lives, and their community. We provide life-changing therapeutic riding, equine education, and equine-assisted activities and have programs suitable for children (4 years and up) to adults of all ages.
Our therapeutic riding instructors are certified through the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship, International (PATH, Int'l). We follow their standards of safety, which are the highest in the world, for clients, volunteers, horses, and staff.
Horses on the Hill, BLOC Ministries (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Horses on the Hill (HOTH) is a unique learning environment incorporating Equine-assisted activities, a riding program, and urban farming and horticulture into Cincinnati's West side communities of Price Hill. HOTH serves economically disadvantaged youth and their families, as well as abused women and individuals in recovery; participants interact with horses, are responsible for barn management chores, and experience nature - all activities that promote physical, spiritual, and emotional growth. Improved self-esteem, discipline, life skills, and stronger family relationships are just a few of the positive changes we hope to instill in those who participate.
Learn more at www.onebloc.org/horses-on-the-hill.
HorseSensing (Shelbyville, Ky.)
HorseSensing fills a gap in services for military veterans and folks in recovery from addictions. We do this by teaching skills that last a lifetime, placing our participants in an actual job, and staying in touch to help keep them on track. We do this by considering the welfare of the horses we partner with, teaching people to be safe, for themselves, and for the horse they are working with. We do this by taking into consideration, on a psychological level, where our participants come from, what helps them and what may set them back.
Kentucky Horse Park Foundation Mustang Troop (Lexington, Ky.)
The Kentucky Horse Park Mustang Troop has been serving local youth since 1994. Developed by the Kentucky Horse Park’s Equine Education Department, this program serves at-risk youth through the channels of horsemanship and riding. The Mustang Troop program provides a horse camp-style experience for underserved children that in many cases, is life-changing.
Learn more at www.khpfoundation.org/mustang-troop.
Kindle Hill Foundation Charity (Blue Bell, Pa.)
At Kindle Hill Foundation, our mission is to support members of our community who can benefit from equine assisted learning and therapy, to relieve stress, anxiety, depression, and PTSD. Horses are natural healers, and they can help us to break through resistance, and find the motivation to develop and grow. We are fortunate to have such kind and willing partners.
Our proactive EAL (Equine Assisted Learning) and EAT (Equine Assisted Therapy) programs understand our client’s personal and professional challenges.
They are designed to provide effective avenues of mental health support, with the goals of reclaiming lives and relationships and, in many cases, for first responders to return safely and effectively to work.
Leg Up for Cleveland's Kids (Cleveland, Ohio)
Leg Up for Cleveland’s Kids (LUCK) is an urban equestrian program in Cleveland, Ohio, enhancing relationships through the healing power of horses. Interaction with horses and adult mentors in a trauma-free environment enables program participants to develop consistent, caring relationships that lead to confident, capable, healthy and engaged citizens.
Little Bit Therapeutic Riding Center (Redmond, WA)
Little Bit was founded in June 1976 by a woman named Margaret Dunlap. Margaret had Multiple Sclerosis and found that being on the back of a horse slowed the advance of her disease. From our humble beginnings of one horse and five riders, we have grown to be one of the largest nationally accredited, industry-leading PATH (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship) International centers and one of the largest full-time therapeutic horsemanship programs in the United States. We offer Adaptive Riding and Hippotherapy, and serve over 500 clients annually with 29 horses and the help of more than 850 volunteers.
Lucky Orphans Horse Rescue (Dover Plains, N.Y.)
People Helping Horses Heal People is the mission that guides everything we do. It holds us to the highest standard of care and rehabilitation for our horses and is at the heart of our educational approach and programming. As a sanctuary, we are committed to the life-long wellbeing of our horses and believe in the healing bond between humans and horses.
Since Lucky Orphans opened its barn doors in 2008 we have helped many horses, along with some sheep and goats, find a more promising and meaningful future. It is our goal to not only save these wonderful animals but to also strengthen the relationship between people and animals to build a more compassionate future.
Manes for Movement (Torrance, Calif.)
Manes for Movement provides both equine assisted therapies and recreational equine activities to children with a variety of developmental, genetic, and neuromuscular diagnoses, including but not limited to Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome, ADHD, Parkinson’s, Multiple Sclerosis, and a variety of genetic syndromes. We also serve individuals from a variety of socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds in the South Bay Community. Since its founding, Manes for Movement has provided thousands of hours of direct client services. Our goal at Manes for Movement is to continue to grow and expand our services, so that one day anyone who can benefit from our life changing equine assisted programing can have access. Even more importantly, we hope to grow so that everyone in the South Bay of Los Angeles, and beyond, can be included in the equestrian community regardless of their disability status.
Maryland Therapeutic Riding Inc. (Crownesville, MD)
Maryland Theraputic Riding (MTR) is decicated to helping individuals find overall wellness and mental wellbeing in their lives through the therapeutic powerof horseback riding. We strive to improve the quality of life of children, adults, active military, and veterans with special needs. MTR’s services support our mission by connecting human and horse to help conquer physical, developmental and emotional challenges and improve quality of life. In addition, we provide a community of support for parents who often feel isolated when dealing with illness or disability.
Metropolitan Equestrian Team - Equine Opportunity Program (New York, N.Y.)
MET supports our student-athletes’ with equestrian mounted activities and academic achievement programs through college preparation, college scholarship opportunities, and through various education programs. Overall, MET provides a supportive encouraging environment that instills in students a sense of belonging, equity, and inclusion for all. We believe that all young riders should have access to the life lessons that come with being part of a horseback riding community. The Equine Opportunity Program allows riders across the country to become as creative as they want through our educational and equestrian programs. Students have the ability to ride in any discipline and work towards their goal no matter their riding level or location in the country. Our EOP riders have the drive and ambition to make their dreams a reality. All of our students, no matter if they are riding on our competition teams or if they are enrolled in our Equine Opportunity Program, provided with platforms for fundraising and access to all of our education resources, including Google Classroom, EquestrianCoach.com, Alternative Learning Program, and our collegiate academic advisors.
Learn more at www.metropolitanequestrianteam.org/equine-opportunity-program and follow MET on Facebook and Instagram.
O.C. Equestrian Vaulting (Costa Mesa, CA)
O.C. Equestrian Vaulting fills gaps in services, and programming, in the horse industry for under-
represented and under-served groups by increasing accessibility and affordability, on a daily
basis. In addition to increasing accessibility, we increase affordability. As the only truly “team”
equestrian sport, Equestrian Vaulting is indeed unique int its ability to truly embrace teamwork.
The fact that everyone shares in the work, and expense enables us to provide more equine
experiences, more affordably. Furthermore, our club is wholly run by volunteers which enables
us to offer more experiences, to more kids, for substantially less that the what “regular” urban
riding schools are able. We provide multiple free exhibitions, demonstrations, Vaulting “Try-
It’s”, horsemanship, equine safety, barn tours as well as classes for local scouts, 4-H, local City
“Parks & Recreation” and other local, underprivileged youth groups. Our ability to offer
extremely inexpensive, or even free, programming is a vital component to including and serving
all socially, racially, economically underserved communities. Our low cost and free
programming are made possible by generous donations of time from our wonderful volunteers,
Prancing Horse (Southern Pines, N.C.)
Prancing Horse's mission is to enhance the lives of individuals with special needs by providing a safe environment for therapeutic horsemanship and is a PATH-accredited therapeutic riding center that provides a needed service to the Sandhills of North Carolina. We have been headquartered in Moore County, N.C., for the past 30 years, providing services for therapeutic riding and local schools, groups, and veterans. Our active board members, motivated volunteers, and trained staff are committed to providing services to all those who will benefit.
Promise Landing Farm (Upper Marlboro, Md.)
Promise Landing Farm (PLF) is creating a community where people of all abilities share the healthy benefits of camaraderie and horsemanship while learning more about the positive energy of people with disabilities. PLF strives to create an inclusive atmosphere open to riders of all abilities, where physical, emotional, and social needs can be met. We find lessons on horseback are extremely beneficial for students working on skills including assertiveness, emotional awareness, empathy, stress tolerance, problem-solving, self-actualization, independence, self-esteem, social responsibility, interpersonal relationships, body awareness, balance, and muscle tone. We encourage our riders to participate throughout our facility, join social groups and clubs, and be active members of the community.
Ride On Therapeutic Horsemanship (Chatsworth, Calif.)
Ride On teaches adaptive horseback riding to children and adults with physical and cognitive disabilities. We also provide physical therapy, specializing in using the movement of the horse to improve specific medical conditions. Founded in 1994, Ride On has given over 130,000 safe, effective and individualized lessons and therapy treatments and currently serves 225 individuals each week.
Special Equestrians (Warrington, Pa.)
Special Equestrians offers under-served individuals the opportunity to experience horseback riding and learn horsemanship skills with specially trained instructors. Our programs are driven by the awareness that every person learns differently – and careful evaluation determines which activities, horse and instructional style are most likely to bring new competencies to a rider. We work with individuals with autism, intellectual disabilities, learning differences, cerebral palsy, genetic disorders, at-risk youth, people experiencing mental health and/or substance use disorder, seniors with age-related disabilities, and families impacted by cancer. Riding here gives them the opportunity to connect with horses in a safe and supportive environment. Importantly, many of the individuals we serve would not have an opportunity to take advantage of our alternative therapeutic activities because of cost and/or accessibility.
Taking the Reins (Los Angeles, Calif.)
Taking the Reins (TTR) is dedicated to helping historically under-served girls learn how to navigate their future and potential by creating an environment for exploration and growth. Caring for our horse herd, tending to our flocks of chickens and ducks, and planting and harvesting in our garden are all examples of how students learn the four pillars of TTR - Confidence, Leadership, Responsibility and Teamwork. We provide a safe and nurturing environment where all individuals feel respected, valued and equitably supported to reach their full potential. We are committed to a nondiscriminatory and anti-racist approach in our policies, teachings, and programs.