About ESS

The past few years have been good to ESS. We have grown tremendously with lots of activities, new programs, and now ESS is a licensed horse rescue also. Our small therapeutic riding program has expanded into Horses Helping Kids (HHK), which combines therapuetic riding with equine-assisted learning. We also offer equine-assisted therapy programs for persons of all ages.

It is very gratifying that ESS can provide these much needed services for the local community. The horses we have taken in that were rescues or unwanted horses are important in helping to fulfill the mission of ESS, to teach and to serve. As we have helped them, they now help us. We work with a number of autistic persons and other disabilities, who benefit from the interactions with our miniature donkey and horses. The need and the response to this program is tremendous, greater than our similar program for persons without special needs. Basically, the lessons are the same regardless - we introduce people to horses and assist them with learning and experiencing as much as they are comfortable with. An autistic person learns to lead and brush a horse the same as another young person, or an older person who is new to horses. Sometimes it's enough that they just come and see the horses from a distance, not even handling the animal, for it to be an exciting experience and to brighten their day. We are excited to see the possibilities and to witness the positive impact that comes from these interactions.

Our newest program, "Equine Spirit Connections," is an equine-assisted therapy program for persons of all ages. Click here for details.

Our biggest need and goal was to have a permanent home so that we can continue to grow. We are happy to say that in May 2015 we closed on the property after raising $125,000 for the down payment. This was a huge, huge step for our little organization and we are very grateful to all who donated for the down payment. It was gratifying and humbling to see the support that we got for this big undertaking. We look forward to many more years at this wonderful facility, seeing our programs continue to grow, and providing a place of sanctuary for both horses and people. We have lots more exciting projects on our agenda, but for now, we are simply thankful and looking forward to the future of ESS.

It has become apparent that our program here is a bit unique compared to other horse stables, rescue or therapeutic programs. Aside from being a bit different, it's working! ESS is evolving into the equine center that we had visualized, not totally in the order that we'd set out, but obviously in the way that it was meant to be. And that, as anyone familiar with this area knows, is the Taos way!

ESS is registered in the State of New Mexico as a non-profit organization and is a 501(c)(3) recognized public charity.

We invite everyone to come visit ESS. See what we're doing, meet our wonderful horses, help us fulfill the vision that has brought us to this point - and help take us to places even greater!

Our main programs are: 
Therapeutic Riding Program
Kids' Learn About Horses
Arc/disabled persons visit with horses program

See our news page for more info on current classes and events. We have a lot of fun activities planned!

And check out the ESS facebook page for photos and news also.

Article about ESS from the 2010 Taos News Pet Directory
PDF files) Page 1
Page 2
Page 3

I could have spent hours working on text for this page, trying to explain who we are and why we do what we do. But the folks at Habitat for Horses said it better than I probably could have, and so - with their permission and with appreciation to Habitat for Horses for what they do - I am reprinting the following from their site's About Us page:

"Every horse has a story to tell. The lame, the healthy, the sick and the strong all have a long history of their interaction with people. Like little kids, horses come into this world ready to trust us, ready to be the greatest horse in the world. It's the people who change them.

There are so many people who don't understand, those who walk through life never knowing the beauty, the gentleness, the majesty of the horse.

There are those who beat them, who punish them for imagined crimes, who starve them, who kill them, who laugh at their fallen, dying bodies and who dine on their flesh.

Their eyes may see these pages, but their souls will not. They will never know what bonding means, what trust can do, why a whisper is stronger than a whip.

That you have come this far in our website tells me that you are one of us who love horses. You come here to read these stories because of what is in your heart. As we read we will laugh, we will cry, and we will understand. Though a thousand miles might separate us, we are of the same blood, we know what the other feels.

We are the horse lovers. We stand together, healing the wounds, picking up the weak, the old, the damaged, the unwanted. We bring them into our barns, feed them, love them and hope that someday they might forgive the humans for what they have done."

Habitat for Horses is a Texas-based horse rescue, "dedicated to changing the lives of horses and humans. Our goal is to create a world where horses are respected for their intrinsic value and for their ability to help us fulfill our emotional, behavioral and spiritual needs. We provide equine rescue services to law enforcement agencies, an active equine adoption program, an equine education center and equine-assisted services to youths and adults." 

Habitat for Horses' web site is a great resource to learn more about horse rescues. Their philosophies and programs are very similar to what ESS is striving to accomplish. ESS shares the thoughts expressed above and is dedicated to helping horses and people in our home area of Taos, New Mexico.

For more information, contact us at: info@equinespiritsanctuary.org.

The Equine Spirit Sanctuary - For Horses and People!
"The Invitation"

Ruth has written several articles on horses, many of which can be found at ezines.com:

EzineArticles.com Basic Author