The Hero Program facilitates life after racing opportunities for horses coming directly out of the racing environment. It was launched in July 2015 as a joint initiative of Harness Racing Victoria and the State Government via the Victorian Racing Industry Fund.
My name is Issy and I have been attending equine therapy for about two years with the retired race horses. I suffer from generalized anxiety and I find that equine therapy helps me a lot. It calms me down and teaches me to cope with my emotions.
Equine therapy is a new age therapy based on the idea that horses are very calming for humans. The therapy helps with various problems such as anxiety and reactive attachment disorder. It is about bonding with the horses and learning new things together.
I attend equine therapy every Thursday for one hour and during that time I work with two horses whose names are Flick and Tiz. Tiz is a very friendly, inquisitive horse who seems to genuinely enjoy human company and has been a role model for students.
Flick is very caring and loves human company, especially when he gives me a cuddle and puts his head on my shoulder which I really like.