Past Events


Bay and K turning Nightstar Carol's group shot DSC00432 DSC00423 DSC00563 DSC00485 DSC00499 DSC00457 DSC00518 DSC005272015 Confident Kids Day Camp

K-3rd graders and their horse friends went to “school”, joined a parade, and each told their story in an educational, fun, day with horses.

They learned teamwork, made new friends, and discovered how horses (and people) may look or act different, but are the same inside. For some, this was their first opportunity to connect with horses.




Heart Matters:

Happy couple painting.Connecting and healing the hearts of husbands and wives

FREE Classes:  Join us to learn how you can help other couples build better relationships. Pick  up some ideas on how to improve your relationship in the process.

Go beyond communication techniques, and get to the heart of the issues that couples face. Husbands and wives  experience healing, and learn better ways to love and care for each other.

Dates: Sundays in November (3, 10, 17, 24) and December 1, 8

Time: 10:45am- noon

Where: South Fellowship Church, 6560 S. Broadway


 August 2013    Caring For the Heart © Training


Staff from Healing Strides completed an informative week of counseling training Colorado Springs.

With this style of counseling (Caring for the Heart), individuals and couples experience healing from the effects of painful events of the past and spiritual issues ( both are core heart issues).  Once these issues have been resolved, people can connect with each other in healthier ways. When core issues have been addressed, skills such as conflict resolution and communication techniques can be taught and used more effectively.

July 2013     Midsummer Rescue at the Ranch

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3 participants and 3 interns from the Denver Rescue Mission explored team-building, problem solving, better communication, and more.  They learned new ways to look at life and each other. Skills learned from the horses can help them improve relationships and become self-sufficient.

May 4th Team Building Experience

10 Students and 4 adult leaders from South Fellowship Church enjoyed the ranch experience and learned how to communicate more clearly, and work as a more effective team. 2 horse activities were designed to simulate what this team could encounter on their mission trip to Utah.

Trying to motivate a horse over a hurdle helped students understand the need to spend time forming a relationship with the animal before the horse would step over the hurdle with them.

In another exercise, groups of 3 were asked to groom and saddle a horse. The center person acted as the “brain” and gave instructions to the people on either side of them (appendages) Only the brain could talk. Some participants were more comfortable being the leader (brain), and others preferred following instructions. They realized that all members of the team were needed to accomplish goals, and that every role was valuable.

These delightful young people were very insightful, and a volunteer called them “little sparks of God.”

October 2012- March 2013 Denver Rescue at the Ranch

Residents and staff from the Denver Rescue Mission enjoyed the fresh air and healing effects of interacting with horses and each other. They discovered how to communicate better, faced and overcame fears, worked together as a team, and found new ways to handle life’s challenges.

August 16, 2012 BOOT SCOOTIN’ GALA

It was the perfect weather and setting for a fun evening to celebrate Healing Strides’ programs.  Guests browsed the silent auction while enjoying delicious appetizers. Nightstar, our equine star gave the audience a sample of the ways horses help people heal from traumatic circumstances. A delicious dinner, drinks, and dancing under the stars to the music of the Colorado Barn Dance Company rounded out the evening. Guests described this event as elegant, yet casual, and fun. They also came away with a better understanding of what Healing Strides is all about.

We heartily thank our sponsors: Ooh La La Events, Armgardt Designs Inc, WindyRidge Thoroughbreds, our hard-working volunteers, and our generous guests who made this evening such a success.

June 2012

Moms and children from a domestic violence shelter learned about safety and building relationships with horses. They groomed, decorated, and proudly paraded the horses around the arena.

100 degree temperatures did not diminish the smiles as they interacted with the horses, many for the first time in their lives. Shelter interns told us that, “Kids and moms have really enjoyed Equine Assisted Psychotherapy, and reported that they have felt extremely safe with all instructors and horses. Several specific kids have really made connections with the horses in a way that is rare for them.”

These moms and children ages 5-14 look forward to ongoing visits 2 times per month, where they will continue to build confidence plus relationship and communication skills.

June 2012 Steps To Better Relationships 

During 4 Sundays in June, couples enriched their marriage while learning some new dance steps. They will remember how to have fun while utilizing some effective teamwork skills.

May 4, 2012 Denver Rescue Mission

Residents from Denver Rescue Mission enjoyed the healing effects out at the ranch.

Hardship in their lives makes it difficult for many of these residents to get close and trust people. It was amazing to watch defenses being lowered as these men worked side-by-side to groom the horses, and as they each built a “wall” to represent barriers between themselves and the world. The horses shared the benefits. One horse, bred for racing, became very relaxed and calm as the residents stroked and groomed him.

Encouraging a large animal over an obstacle offers a good metaphor for overcoming problems in our lives. Teamwork, communication, and trying to look at things from the horse’s perspective (empathy) were skills employed as residents discovered creative ways to get the horse over the hurdle.

Fridays in April, 2012

Couples learned the foundational skills of “Marriage Team Building” while enjoying the benefits of closeness, communication and shared experiences — all while learning to have fun through social dance. They added techniques for respectful speaking and listening to better share their day’s experiences and work on deeper understanding of each other.

Fridays in March, 2012
New dance students eased in with 30-minutes of basics and joined the intermediate “West Coast Swing” students in one of Denver’s long-standing favorites at dance clubs throughout the metro area.

Fridays in February, 2012
In this year’s Valentine’s month, dance students enjoyed a romantic favorite for weddings and for those songs that are too slow for fast-dancing while too fast for a One-Step.

Fridays in January, 2012
A drove of dancers prepared for the National Western Stock Show during January’s “Country Western Swing.” After they learned moves like the Beginning and Advanced Pretzels and Barrel Rolls, several couples showed off this popular dance style at a local Country Western clubs.

Previous Years’ Events


The Ranch: clients, interns & horses -and- the City: couples
In the Spring and the Fall, the Denver Rescue Mission brought out 2 new groups of residents, staff and interns to heal and grow by interacting with horses at the ranch. The learning situations in our exercises provided life metaphors of difficult communication and teamwork issues faced by these attendees who learned something about themselves and ways to help others through the experience. Early in the year and once in the fall, we continued to offer a variety of dance classes in the city while couples explored lead/follow, communication, and more principles in building an enjoyable marriage. One highlight of the dance-year was our April English Country Dance where we celebrated what was arguably the wedding of the CENTURY. Party-goers danced to LIVE melodies from local sensation “Balance & Swing” as our guest dance-master taught a large room of young (and older) couples through the wildly-popular 1700s dance form as seen in “Pride and Prejudice.”


Couples, clients, interns and horses
Throughout 2010 couples once again strengthened their relationships through monthly dance classes. In the Spring, residents, staff and interns from Denver Rescue Mission received healing effects of interacting with horses at WindyRidge Thoroughbreds as we all learned about communication, teamwork, and handling challenges. The horses, obstacles, and situations encountered in the exercises provided metaphors for difficulties faced by both Mission residents and interns who learned something about themselves and ways to help others through the experience. In the summer, we introduced “Steps to Better Relationships (Adult Bible Fellowship)” where couples discovered the basics of Ballroom dance are like living Biblical principles while they explored lead/follow, communication, and more.


Couples, families and soldiers
Much of the year was devoted to minstering to the needs of couples relationships through dance classes. Early 2009 included working with combat veterans with issues through assisting CVCU.


Kids, couples and EAP
Much of the year was devoted to minstering to the needs of kids from abusive backgrounds or from broken homes. There were a number of media days and demonstrations to show the power of Equine Assisted Psychotherapy (EAP) in people’s lives. The year ended with free seminars helping couples better survive the holidays.