Close shot of a young woman standing next to a horse stroking its jaw. She is smiling at the camera.

Blue Tongue Adventure’s newest disability support program has been wildly popular with participants, as they get the chance to work with horses, while learning valuable social and emotional skills along the way. 

Once a week, the Blue Tongue Crew heads to Gumdale’s Kurshonbrooke Lodge for their equine-assisted learning program, ‘The Stable’, under the expert guidance of experienced teacher and equestrian coach, Shonel Balsillie. 

Blue Tongue Coordinator Sam Franklin-Wangman said the first 10-week unit is focused on friendships. 

“It’s a really beautiful program! Our crew is learning so much about relationships, communication, and emotions. Working with horses helps them to understand people’s reactions,” she said.  

“For example, if you are loud, and not respecting a space, a horse will feel that energy and shy away from you. But if you come in open, kind and accepting, horses are willing to come to you. It’s the same for our interactions with our family and friends.” 

Ms Franklin-Wangman said the participants are involved in a diverse range of learning experiences. 

“Each session opens with a grounding and gratitude exercise. There’s also time to sit down and work through topics such as feeling overwhelmed, and how to process those feelings,” she said. 

A man stands with a small white horse in front of him. He pats the horse with one hand, while his other hand rests on a woman's shoulder for support. Two people stand on either side of a horse, near its face. A horse handler shows a young man how to gently pat the horse's nose.

The Stable is just one of many disability programs on offer every week through Blue Tongue Adventure. There are also woodwork and art workshops, cooking programs, social events, and much more – all designed with young adults in mind. 

Want to know more? Contact us here or call 1800 832 287.