HEARTS THERAPEUTIC EQUESTRIAN CENTER

Where Horses Help People

aka Hearts Therapeutic Equestrian Center   |   Santa Barbara, CA   |  www.heartsriding.org

Mission

Our mission is to employ the power of the horse to enhance the capabilities of children and adults with special needs in Santa Barbara County. We assist residents of Santa Barbara County who have physical, cognitive, or psychological challenges due to injury, illness, or disability. Therapeutic horseback riding significantly improves the capacities, independence, self-esteem, relationships and overall health of these individuals while enhancing their enjoyment of life.

Ruling year info

1999

Interim Executive Director

Mr. Thom Bateman

Main address

PO Box 30662

Santa Barbara, CA 93130 USA

Show more contact info

Formerly known as

Hearts Adaptive Riding Program, Inc.

EIN

77-0460907

NTEE code info

Services to Promote the Independence of Specific Populations (P80)

Developmentally Disabled Services/Centers (P82)

Health - General and Rehabilitative N.E.C. (E99)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Many people with disabilities of all types fail to thrive in traditional therapeutic settings. For those who have physical disabilities, physical therapy is often slow, tedious, and works only certain areas of need. Those with emotional disabilities are sometimes overwhelmed by human interaction, and talk therapy can take years to impact someone's life. For individuals with intellectual disabilities, gains are often slow and challenging. Our approach with equine therapy is unique in that it exercises the entire body, it creates an emotional bonding with an equine that is safe and not overwhelming, and is fun, empowering, and exciting, which encourages people with all disabilities to stick with it and improve dramatically in a relatively short time.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Summer Camp at Hearts

Summer Camp at Hearts offers a safe equine experience for children, ages 6-10. This unique learning experience includes grooming and tacking, horsemanship and riding, art, science and lots of fun! Riders are grouped according to age and ability to ensure that everyone has an unforgettable week. Both non-disabled children and children with special needs attend these camps.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Weekly lessons are individually designed to capitalize upon a rider’s capabilities while improving areas of impairment. For physically challenged riders, therapeutic results include an increased ability to sit, stand or walk unassisted as well as improved coordination, flexibility, circulation, and general health. Riders with cognitive challenges improve in attention span, ability to follow directions, communication skills, and a greater ability to process auditory and visual information. Those with behavioral or emotional challenges demonstrate better control of their emotions and behavior, improved relationships, and greater self esteem. Horseback riding is an exhilarating and motivating experience that enhances our riders’ overall happiness, health and quality of life.

Population(s) Served
People with disabilities

Equine Services for Heroes provides Veteran participants with an opportunity to build camaraderie, be of service to fellow Veterans and the community, and to experience a challenging physical activity. This program also helps to address the challenges of PTSD and re-assimilation into civilian life. Equine Services for Heroes is a weekly program for U.S. Veterans. All participants are U.S. Veterans from all military branches, including the Coast Guard, with an age range of 25 to 85 years. Hearts is currently collaborating with Veterans Treatment Court and New Beginnings Counseling Center to reach more Veterans. There are now 12 active participants in the program. Veterans participate at no cost to them, so Hearts must fundraise for the entire cost.

Population(s) Served
Veterans

Hearts uses Equine-Facilitated Learning (EFL) and Equine-Facilitated Psychotherapy (EFP) in its therapeutic horsemanship program to provide at-risk or special needs youth with positive, therapeutic learning experiences through unmounted work with horses under the guidance of a trained mental health professional. These programs promote the development of essential life skills such as communication, trust, compassion, and honesty, by working alongside an equine partner to ultimately achieve increased self-awareness.

Population(s) Served
At-risk youth
Children and youth

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of volunteers

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Children and youth, Adults, Seniors

Related Program

Therapeutic Riding Program

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Decreasing

Context Notes

*Our volunteer numbers in 2020 reflect a lower amount of individual than usual because of limitations caused by the pandemic.

Number of participants engaged in programs

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

People with disabilities, Children and youth, Veterans

Related Program

Therapeutic Riding Program

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of veterans with PTSD served

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Veterans

Related Program

Veterans Program

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Total number of volunteer hours contributed to the organization

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

We empower residents of Santa Barbara County who have physical, cognitive, or psychological challenges due to injury, age, illness, or disability. Therapeutic horseback riding significantly improves the physical and cognitive capacities, relationships, self-esteem and overall health of these individuals, while enhancing their enjoyment of life.

Hearts uses the power of the horse to enhance the capabilities and quality of life for children and adults with special needs. The movement of a horse stimulates the body and works the muscles of the rider in a manner similar to the human stride. This motion cannot be duplicated by machines or in physical therapy. Examples of the unique classes we offer and which have proven to be incredibly successful are a program for veterans with PTSD, and a collaboration with the Braille Institute to provide classes for people with impaired vision.

Weekly lessons are individually designed to capitalize upon a rider's capabilities while improving areas of impairment. For physically challenged riders, therapeutic results include an increased ability to sit, stand or walk unassisted as well as improved coordination, flexibility, circulation, and general health. Riders with mental challenges improve in attention span, ability to follow directions, communication skills, and a greater ability to process auditory and visual information. Those with emotional disturbances demonstrate better control of their emotions and behavior, improved relationships, and greater self esteem. Horseback riding is an exhilarating and motivating experience that enhances our riders' overall happiness, health and quality of life. In addition to our weekly lesson program, we conduct an annual student horse show, offer summer horse camps that integrate able-bodied children and those with disabilities.

Founded in 1985, Hearts has been providing therapeutic horseback riding and horsemanship activities to disabled individuals aged 4-90 for over 33 years. We are recognized by the Professional Association for Therapeutic Horsemanship, International (PATH) as a “Premier" facility, the highest level, with superb adherence to PATH's strict safety, administrative and program guidelines. We have an extensive volunteer program and are committed to humane treatment and excellent care of equines who may be longer useful to professional riders, but are healthy and able to maintain productive lives as therapeutic horses.

Hearts has provided over 7500 hours of lessons over the years. We have steadily grown over the last 5 years from 42 to 93 weekly riders and participants. In addition to benefiting more members of the community, our plans for expansion are designed to increase ongoing revenue streams. While increasing the number of people we serve has resulted in increased lesson revenues, these fees cover only 33% of the actual cost of our services. Our overhead expenses continue to increase as we grow, primarily for instructor salaries and horse care expenses. Additionally, our growing services have created the need for additional horses and equipment.

Capital campaign planning is underway to build a new facility at an adjacent location on County of Santa Barbara land. The County has been extremely generous in its lease terms as they value our program's role in the community. Increasing our revenue stream will help in long-term sustainability for this vital service for Santa Barbara County residents.

Financials

HEARTS THERAPEUTIC EQUESTRIAN CENTER
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
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  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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HEARTS THERAPEUTIC EQUESTRIAN CENTER

Board of directors
as of 3/1/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Mr. Thom Bateman

Hearts Therapeutic Equestrian Center

Term: 2017 - 2019

Sandy Lovett

Thom Bateman

Barrett Reed

Andrew Wilson

Trey Evans

Dusty Stutsman

Trudi Timms-Schuette

Linda Khacheck

Bob Manning

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? No
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 11/19/2020

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Decline to state
Gender identity
Male

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

 

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data