Haven Acres offers a safe, country environment where hurting youth find hope, healing, and restoration through their interaction with horses and loving mentors that exhibit the transformational love of Jesus.
The design is to pair one child with one mentor and one horse that will work together on a weekly basis. A child between the ages of 9-17 will come out, free of charge, once a week for a 90-minute session during the summer and/or fall months. Generally, participants will help with chores around the farm for the first 30 minutes and then work with their horse, grooming and learning basic horsemanship. Many weeks we teach Bible lessons and incorporate the horses to illustrate the lesson. These sessions are God-centered, but anyone is welcome! Participants in the program will have the same mentor and horse all summer, God-willing, so that they can build a trusting relationship with them. If a mentor is sick or goes on vacation a substitute mentor will work with the child that week.
The goals of the mentorship sessions are 1) For the participants to experience God’s unconditional love through their relationship with their mentor, 2) For the participants to grow mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, and 3) For the participants to build a trusting, respectful relationship with a horse and learn horsemanship skills. Since these are our goals, riding is not our primary focus, though it is a part of many sessions. In order to build a safe, trusting, respectful relationship with a horse it is important (and fun!) to work with them on the ground some weeks. Opportunities abound at the ranch to build confidence, trust, and a good work ethic which will help the kids as they deal with difficulties they may face now or in the future.
Please visit the registration page for more information.
In 2015, Haven Acres was privileged to partner with Minnesota Hands and Voices to begin a program specifically for deaf or hard of hearing kids. ASL interpreters and signing mentors are available to work one-on-one with the students. This program is structured similarly to the General Program. The participants attend sessions weekly for 90 minutes during the summer months. They help with chores and work with their mentors on basic horsemanship skills. We feel very privileged to offer services to these kids as there is very little available to them in the community. We hope to continue to see this program grow. If you have experience with ASL and are interested in serving in this program, please apply!