“Hope is an amazing therapy horse and part of the Mane in Heaven therapy herd. One of Hope’s attributes that helps with her therapeutic work is her ability to connect to people. She demonstrates consistent compassion, patience, kindness, and enthusiasm for her job. Hope truly enjoys human contact; she loves to be pet, cuddled, walked, and handled—sometimes clumsily by unfamiliar people or those with disabilities. She is interested and enthusiastic but always maintains calm and control.

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The connection and impact Hope has with people is amazing. She brings a sense of calmness and helps with emotional support, confidence, social skills, trust, empathy, and team building. Prior to COVID, she would visit Shriners Hospital monthly. There was one visit in particular that truly showed off the powerful connections she’s able to forge. A young girl did not want to walk during her physical therapy session, but that changed when she learned she would be able to walk with Hope. She looked at Hope and Hope looked at her. The connection was immediate and powerful. The little girl took the lead rope and began to walk with Hope. This was truly therapy and it is captured in this short video (at 1:50):

Hope is an amazing horse that touches and changes so many lives. Even during COVID shut-downs, she continued to bring hope and joy to people through virtual visits. She truly is a very special horse to those she visits, as well as to family, friends, and medical staff. She also is a source of hope and comfort for all of the volunteers that take care of her. She lives up to her name and brings so many Hope!” —Dina M.

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