The population at California State Prison, Corcoran, benefits so much from horse therapy, they chose to fund the program on their own.
Generally, other prisons receive grants for such programs but CSP-Corcoran hasn’t been selected. Rather than miss their opportunity for growth and healing, the population decided to fund the program with their own money.
New Beginnings at Circle T Ranch in Lemoore offers equine therapy services.
Theadministration welcomes such programs and acknowledges population involvement, making this opportunity possible.
Acting Warden T.L. Campbell hopes future grants will be designated to CSP-Corcoran so more participants can be involved without the need for the incarcerated to provide funding.
“It’s encouraging to see a program like this return due to (incarcerated population) funding. They have the motivation for success and I hope that we will be able to offer more programs and opportunities for them,” Campbell said.
Few attendees had previous equine experience
Directly participating in the program were 30 incarcerated people while others on the facility were able to view as spectators.
While there were some first-time participants, a few others had experienced the benefits.
Villegas, one of those doing it a second time, said being with the horses, like High Voltage, helps him calm his nerves.
“This program is therapeutic, calming, and tranquil. I grew up around cattle and horses, so this takes me back,” he said.
Meanwhile, participants enjoyed their first time interacting with two other horses named Pumpkin and Duke. In addition to horses, the program also brought a dog named Trigger, who received plenty of attention.
By Lt. Robert Clifton
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