This workshop is designed to give the participant a practical and helpful framework for developing an equine assisted psychotherapy (EAP) or equine assisted learning (EAL) facilitation style that is rooted in a trauma informed, somatic and attachment oriented approach to growth and healing. What do we mean by this? Trauma informed (according to Dr. Bruce Perry) means that knowledge of the neurobiology of trauma informs this practice; that it is relational (safe), relevant (developmentally matched), repetitive (patterned), rewarding (pleasurable), rhythmic (resonant with neural patterns) and respectful (of child, family, culture). Somatic means we recognize that, as Bessel Van der Kolk puts it, ‘the body keeps the score,” and we need to discern and address the trauma residue stored in the body for true healing to occur. Attachment oriented takes into account the relational orientation developed in early childhood based on caregiver interactions, which results in relationship patterns that are either secure, avoidant, anxious, or disorganized. This perspective considers what was lost in early childhood and how it can be regained during any life stage.
Through video clips, role-play, and discussion, we will explore and address the challenges and rewards of this type of facilitation.