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Since 1992, Special Equestrians of the Treasure Coast, Inc. of Vero Beach, Florida has provided Equine-assisted Services for children and adults who are challenged by Autism, Down Syndrome, Cerebral palsy, Spina Bifida, Strokes, Diabetes, and other conditions affecting muscles and speech.  Many of our riders are unable to control their arms and legs and are among scores of people in Indian River County burdened by mental, developmental, physical and emotional disabilities.  

To a child or adult with a physical, developmental or emotional disability, life looks a lot brighter on horseback.  The power and warmth of a horse strengthens and tones muscles, improves balance, head control and coordination, builds patience and self-esteem, and offers a sense of freedom and equality.  Horseback riding gently and rhythmically simulates the human gait, so riders with physical disabilities can improve their flexibility and muscle strength.

The horses, most of them in their 20s, seem to understand their roles, patiently waiting for their riders, who may be unbalanced in the saddle, to position themselves and give the horse the "walk on" cue either by voice, cluck, or hand sign.  We see children and adults change as soon as they get into the saddle.  For a little while, at least, they are in control of their lives.

We charge a minimal rider’s fee, yet even at that, some disadvantaged students could not benefit from our program were it not for help from generous donors like you.  Donations of any amount make a huge difference, and your gift helps to ensure that no student is turned away due to an inability to pay.


We are a 501(c)3 Non-Profit Organization and a Center Member of PATH, Intl. (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship, International.)

The Special Equestrians facility is located at 7065 37th St. in Vero Beach, FL.  We welcome all visitors and potential riders and volunteers.  For more information, please call our barn phone number (772) 562-7603.  Thanks again for your generous support.

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