Horses have been used in equine assisted therapy activities for some time now. Research evidence documents the effectiveness of these therapy activities for a variety of clientele.
Donkeys have not been used in such activities to any significant extent. However, we would suggest that donkeys, especially miniature donkeys, potentially could provide a profound benefit.
The first, very obvious benefit, is that they are smaller and thus can be easily transported to locations and can engage in activities in a smaller area. While miniature horses potentially could be used in this manner, the difference in personalities is immense. Donkeys are simply much more laid back and can be trusted not to over react in situations.
I have a significant desire to work with youth who have experienced trauma or have other neurological challenges. The Way of the Donkey approach is thoroughly grounded in positive psychology and trauma informed care practices.
I have chosen to use the term “Donkey Assisted Life Coaching” because my primary focus is empowerment.
I have developed a preliminary plan of action for a comprehensive school-based approach that is focused on special education classrooms–or could be expanded to the entire school. You can read about this here.
This page provides insight into some of the background information resources.