I was very selective and intentional when it came to looking for a program for my daughter. I wanted something that would instill self worth, tools to help her grow and a place where she felt welcomed to be herself. I was looking for a program where she would learn from real experiences. Bridle Up Hope offers exactly that, with the added bonus of riding horses as the experience.
Liz was struggling with self confidence, feeling safe, being extremely shy, overly anxious and trouble sleeping at night. She was constantly sick and rarely wanted to stay in school; she really didn’t want to do much of anything. She felt powerless and lived in fear all the time. She was not the adventurous, fun, loving girl I knew her to be. She was starting to shell up and wall off. I was searching for something to spark her joy and she was secretively searching for something that would brighten her days.
So you can imagine the excitement I had when I was introduced to this program.
Liz was super nervous on her first day but when we arrived and she met Abbey, the nerves went away. Abbey was able to connect with my daughter in a way I wasn't and she provided her with a safe environment. Working with young girls myself, I know the importance of this connection. Watching Liz bond with Abbey week after week was beautiful. Liz felt safe enough to be herself, open up, share her thoughts and laugh again. Abbey helped guide Liz to realize her own worth and to focus on the small victories which lead to the big ones. Abbey became like an older sister, a mentor Liz could look up too and I am forever grateful for her.
Watching her develop daily habits, believe in herself and acquire life skills, is a dream come true. The dedication Liz showed to Bridle Up Hope was remarkable. She looked forward to every service day, even in the snowest weather conditions because it gave her purpose and more time with the horses. Her commitment to showing up every week was inspiring to watch. Over the 14 weeks of the program, Liz's confidence grew immensely. The 7 Habits taught in the program changed her perspective on life and how to navigate it. And the service continues to provide her with the environment she thrives in.
The skills Liz learned from this program are incredibly helpful and something she will use the rest of her life. “Think Win-Win” and “Seek first to Understand, Then to be Understood” are the two habits that had the greatest impact on her. She became courageous and always sought solutions that benefit everyone. Her compassion and empathy towards others grew each week. Think win-win taught Liz to be more proactive, considerate of others, and to focus on things that she has control of. Working with different horses with different personalities showed Liz the importance of listening and clear communication. She learned how to use her voice and communicate with courage. School became enjoyable again and classmates were easier to work with. Liz started listening with her eyes, heart and ears.
Bridle Up Hope has made a tremendous difference in Liz’s life. She is a whole new girl who believes anything is possible. Liz fell in love with horses and aspires to become a horse trainer and to have a horse of her own. She worked so hard and I am so proud of her.
Stephen Covey said “Leadership is communicating to people their worth & potential so clearly that they come to see it in themselves.”
- Liz's Mother