REIGNING IN RESULTS: School children with the ponies from the Mane Matters program.
REIGNING IN RESULTS: School children with the ponies from the Mane Matters program.

HARNESSING POTENTIAL: New program launches for at-risk kids

HORSES don’t lie – that’s the mantra of Erin Wilson, school chaplain and founder of charity Mane Matters.

When Ms founded the program six years ago to teach at-risk youth horsemanship skills, she knew she was onto something that could change lives.

“Horses reflect what the person is doing and what energy they’re giving. Their response is based on what you bring to the table” she said.

“Dogs love you irrespective but horses can tell very quickly if someone has no confidence or is very anxious.”

The program quickly became a hit with schools such as Southern Downs Flexible Learning Hub. Head of school Chris Mason, said results were palpable.

“We’ve had a number of students change. They become a lot more positive and we are able to form a better relationship with them. They go from avoiding talking to you or being around you to being a lot happier to engage,” he said.

“They know they can achieve something and they want to continue to do better.”

Now the charity is launching a new program, Harness your Life, thanks to a $10,000 grant from SDRC.

Offering the charity more gear and signage and the ability to build up from their skeleton budget, Ms Wilson hoped Mane Matters could continue to lift up Southern Downs kids.

Join the open day launch at 106 Glengallan Rd tomorrow.

Entry is free and the event runs from 10-11am.


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