Local Children’s Charity Pilots New Therapy Service with Horses

Heel & Toe Children’s Charity, Durham is delighted to have launched a specialised therapy service in the form of Hippotherapy. The charity has been awarded funding from The National Lottery Awards for All to pilot a project where 18 children will receive 6 sessions of Equine facilitated Physiotherapy ( EFPT) each.

EFPT, also called hippotherapy, is a physiotherapy technique that uses the movement of a horse to treat a variety of conditions, in this case children with physical disabilities and complex needs. The horse’s regular rhythm of walking can be used to improve balance, strength, joint range, righting reactions, tone, flexibility and sensory processing essential in the development of motor skills.

Heel & Toe Charity’s Clinical Lead – Jo Parsons is a Fully Qualified Paediatric Physiotherapist and is coordinating the new hippotherapy service in partnership with Washington Riding School to help local children with physical disabilities and complex needs in the North East and surrounding regions. If the pilot scheme is a success, Heel & Toe Charity will look to apply for further funding to continue running this amazing new service.

“It is such a privilege to have this opportunity to deliver this unique therapy.  The children love it and don’t even know they are doing physio!  It is wonderful to treat these children in an outdoor and non-clinical environment, and I am excited to see all the positive benefits for not only the children, but their parents and our volunteers as well.”

Jo Parsons, Clinical Lead at Heel & Toe Children’s Charity.