Upstate farm offers equine therapy to veterans, first responders


INMAN, S.C. (WSPA) – Guiding Reins aims to help Upstate veterans, military personnel and first responders with emotional, mental, and physical trauma through equine therapy.

The nonprofit invites veterans, military personnel, first responders to its open house at Hemlock Hollow Farm from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, Aug. 24.

Jen Hartzell owns the farm located at 331 Clement Loop Road in Inman.

Hartzell said several of her horses are rescues and needed a noble purpose.

“Just knowing that they’re serving a purpose and helping others. There’s just a lot of joy in watching. Whether it’s children out here for lessons or adults who are coming for our Equine Assisted Therapy Program, there’s a lot of personal joy for me watching the interactions take place,” Hartzell said.

Hartzell is Guiding Reins’ vice president. She said the nonprofit’s founder, Diane Prewitt, shares this passion for helping horses and veterans.

“I am very excited. This has been a huge passion of mine that I’ve been working on for several years and just have kind of noticed that there’s been a void here in the Upstate of an Equine Assisted Therapy Program,” Prewitt said,”specifically targeted for veterans, military personnel, first responders and their family members. So, we’re really exited to finally fill this void and offer this service here in the upstate”.

Prewitt said the Wounded Warrior Project and the Department of Disabilities and Special Needs are some of the organizations they’re aiming to help.

Both Hartzell and Prewitt said horses are social animals that aren’t judgmental or presumptuous. Thus, Prewitt added, people can engage and build healing relationships with them. 

To learn more about the equine therapy program and Guiding Reins, click here.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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