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For Immediate Release
July 20, 2016

Russ Reno, Communications and Legislative Services, (office) 402-471-8287 or (cell) 402-450-7318, or 

YRTC-Geneva Youth Learn Life Lessons at J-Bar-D Ranch

Geneva – Three youth at the Youth Rehabilitation and Treatment Center in Geneva each trained a yearling horse at the J-Bar-D Ranch near Geneva and showed what they and the horse learned at a recent public demonstration.

Dan Scarborough, YRTC-Geneva facility administrator, said the ‘horse therapy’ was a part of the YRTC’s three-month-long Equine Program. Besides taking the horses through their training, the youth also spoke about the knowledge they gained during the program, including their greatest challenges, greatest moments, and greatest “life lesson.” 

The program teaches patience, coping skills in dealing with frustration, leadership, boundaries, and gaining respect by being fair and consistent. Much of the initial time was focused on learning safety and equine psychology.

The youth developed and used personal management and critical thinking skills, and they are able to take what they have learned and accomplished and apply it to their lives. They were taught “hands-on” ground work training, and together the horse and youth overcame their fears and gained confidence in themselves. The program gives the youth more knowledge of animals and more comfort around them along with a sense of accomplishment.

The training and demonstration were facilitated by Jacki Wilkins at the J-Bar-D Ranch. Over 40 people attended the program to show their support of the youth, which included YRTC-Geneva staff and youth, families of the youth, and volunteers.