The National Center for Equine Facilitated Therapy (NCEFT) provides equine-assisted therapy to improve the lives of adults and children with disabilities or special needs.
The non-profit California institution also provides equine-assisted therapies while promoting education and research in hippotherapy. The NCEFT facility in Woodside, California is a fully renovated 12 acre 1920 dairy barn consisting of additional paddocks for housing at least 50 horses. The public benefit corporation also includes an outpatient physical and occupational therapy in which year round programs are performed, and two arenas with state of the art facilities.
For about four decades, the National Center for Equine Facilitated Therapy has treated thousands of children and adults with special needs through the curing capabilities of a horse. The commitment of the immediate families of the patients as well as the dedication and skills of the professionals as well as volunteers combine to give the subjects with disabilities with a better life that is why this facility has been considered the leader in providing hippotherapy. The generous donations of numerous good Samaritans has helped this institution to survive and even maintain excellence particularly with the programs they offer while maintaining a state of the art facility.
The NCEFT effectively utilizes the movement of highly trained horses to provide effective therapy, both occupational and physical therapy as well as services to adults with special needs and disabled children particularly those living in the San Francisco Bay Area. All services are subject to a sliding fee scale to ensure that all individuals in need may avail of the programs offered by the facility.
NCEFT also offers adaptive riding as well as adaptive carriage driving as forms of treatment which are different from the usual hippotherapy and other equine assisted therapies for persons with special needs. Those who will specifically benefit from these programs are adults and children with neuromuscular, sensor and cognitive processing disorders.
Adaptive riding instructors are certified by the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship or PATH and are trained to facilitate physical, emotional, social, cognitive, educational and behavioral development by combining recreation, eduction and sports. Adaptive driving instructors teach driving from a carriage seat or wheelchair as well as harnessing while offering fun and exciting alternative in addition to riding.