Horse and Soul currently operates out of 1 acre of land at 10815 Amar Drive, Conroe, but owner Maria Delavan said the faith-based horse therapy program is looking to move to a 20-acre property up for auction July 14.
The property would allow the program to add eight horses to the two it currently has and serve more people in the area. Delavan said she currently works with one to three people a week and has worked with more than 100 people since opening a year ago.
“We’ve been so blessed, even with our finances. We were able to fundraise like twice as much in our first year than what I projected, so it’s just like OK here we go. It was encouraging, and I think that’s one of the reasons I’m willing to believe,” Delavan said.
Although Horse and Soul reached out to its donors and land investors, Delavan said she was unable to find a commitment outside of the business’s operating expenses. The land is split into two $100,000 parcels and was previously priced together at $750,000.
“We really need either someone or a group of people just to come forward and be willing to partner with us and partner with what God is doing and just be a part of our family,” Delavan said.
Delavan described her nonprofit as nontraditional therapy where people use horses to work through personal issues. This ranges from building courses to represent struggles and leading the horse through them to using the horse as something dear to them.
“Horses are prey animals, and so they are expert body language readers, like way beyond what you and I can see. ... They’re very aware of discrepancies. … If a person is saying to me, ‘I feel fine,’ but the horse is like anxious or their ears are up or very alert, that person is not fine," Delavan said.
With the new land, Delavan said Horse and Soul would be able to offer more services, including certification for equine therapy, and partner with more nonprofits in the area, including transitional home Legacy Dream Center in Willis, veterans program Camp Hope and human trafficking nonprofit Elevate 61. Delavan said she would even like to foster horses.
“It would cut down our costs for purchasing horses, and it would also be really cool to partner horses that have been in hard situations with people who have been in hard situations,” Delavan said.
If Horse and Soul does not get the land, Delavan said the program will continue at its current location. But with more land, she said it could become an international destination for faith-based equine therapy.
Those interested in supporting Horse and Soul can go to www.horseandsoultexas.com to learn more about the program.