A horse therapy farm in Plymouth is at risk of closing because the owner is no longer able to afford the rent and liability insurance involved in her goal of helping children with special needs. Chris Engle told WKVI that she works with children who have been through traumatic experiences or suffer from disabilities, pairing them with horses and trying to get them to trust again.
Engle explained that Dreamcatcher Ranch was created to provide a safe haven for children, a place where children can go to learn how to pray, forgive, and trust in God. Engle said many of the children who come to Dreamcatcher Ranch believe God has forsaken them, and she said her goal is to teach them to trust and have faith.
“This is what I’ve always done; it’s just a basic foundation,” Engle explained. “I’m reestablishing their trust. Not only in life, but in God and other people.”
Unfortunately, Engle said she sold the ranch this spring and now rents it. She is no longer able to afford the cost of rent or liability insurance, and she is now seeking to buy back the land to continue to provide her much-needed services to children in need. To that end, she is seeking donations and is asking the community to come forward and support her cause.
“If I get enough donations, I’m going to buy this land back. Then when I buy this land back, I’m going to turn it into a retreat for children and for women and this is where children can come and they can seek a safe haven. I will teach them about God, I will teach them how to pray, how to forgive, and how to heal,” said Engle.
Engle said the ranch provides basic services to a small group of children to ensure that each child gets the special attention they need.
“Since we’re very simple, the basic services I do provide, like a day camp, but I only work with a few children at a time. I don’t work with a big group because the child gets lost – too many kids, the child gets lost in that. I work one-on-one or with just a couple children,” Engle said.
Engle works with a number of children with physical difficulties or those who have been through traumatic experiences in their childhood. She said horse therapy helps to build bonds and reestablish trust in their life.
“Every child that comes in, I pair them with a horse, and that child always takes care of their horse, by brushing him, connecting with that horse. And this is what builds the bond and the trust again in that child,” Engle said.
For more information or to donate, contact engle at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (574) 952-8661. Engle emphasized that the ranch is also in need of hay because she has no source of hay for the horses.