Rawhide reopens CHAPS Equine-Assisted Services

Published: Aug. 22, 2018 at 3:22 PM CDT
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An equestrian creative therapy program in the Fox Valley reopened its doors after shutting down because of high operating costs just 7 months ago. CHAPS Academy in Shiocton is now operating under a new name.

Rawhide, a residential and outpatient counseling service provider acquired CHAPS.

As we reported in January, it was looking to buy the land to keep the services CHAPS provides alive.

“Traditional therapy will have people sitting in a room talking to one another, but that doesn't always work, and this is using non-traditional therapies like equine therapy, or play therapy, that will bring out the emotions of individuals that in traditional therapy doesn't work,” said Alan Loux, president and CEO of Rawhide.

The new facility in Shiocton showcases horse therapy and counseling services all under the same roof.

“I think what this facility will offer is help for at-risk youth and their families, so it's a one-stop shop they can come to and get the help that they need. And particularly in these times youth face so many different challenges and struggles, and they need just a little help, and help from the community, help from therapy, and this is a place where they can come to and get help,” said Loux.

Rawhide is keeping the equine-assisted services, combining it with a youth clinic and supporting families hopefully before a situation gets worse.

“With horses, the cool thing is they're very real, and they're in the moment. And so with youth that can attach to a horse, or trust which is really unconditional, that plays out, but what the horse can do is the horse picks up on emotions that maybe we don't necessarily see in particular in non-verbals,” said Danny Stone, Director of Youth Services.

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