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Animal Assisted Therapy

Children and their families can take advantage of the presence of our therapy animals in a beautiful setting that encourages healing. The Youth Villages Inner Harbour Campus’ nationally accredited equine therapy program teaches children and youth about responsibility, empathy, trust, and relational self-confidence.

Animal Assisted Therapy (AAT) is a goal-directed, documented intervention that is used to address the clinical symptoms of the child through the inclusion of a therapy animal. AAT can increase the involvement of the child in his or her therapy, offer a safe way to explore touch and boundaries, and increase self-esteem through the acquisition of new skills.

In addition to our horses, the children interact with our residential dogs and classroom animals, from a bearded dragon to fish and small mammals. One campsite has two miniature goats that are the responsibility of the residents.

The residents frequently comment how much the animals love them without judgment and frequently feel more comfortable disclosing their troubles to a therapy animal.

About Us
Youth Villages is a private nonprofit organization dedicated to helping emotionally and behaviorally troubled children and their families live successfully. We help more than 22,000 children and families each year from more than 20 states and Washington, D.C. Our Evidentiary Family Restoration® approach involves intensive work with the child and family, a focus on measuring outcomes, keeping children in the community whenever safely possible, and providing accountability to families and funders. The EFR approach produces lasting success for children with success rates twice that of traditional services at one-third the cost of traditional care.
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