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About Spirit of Eight & Equine Assisted Healing

At Spirit of Eight we are dedicated to caring for the well-being of people.  Our experience, training, and education coalesce with the amazing curative qualities of equine to produce a powerful catalyst to help individuals with almost any cognitive, physical, sensory and/or emotional impairment.

An individual that interacts with a powerful animal like a horse benefits from the natural bonding that takes place.  From that connection a person gains a sense of self and belonging and from that significance emerges opportunities for change and growth.

Spirit of Eight was established in 2004 by Carla Dickhaut  who has a significant background working with both horses and people, especially with individuals who struggle with behaviour, cognitive, or emotional issues. 

To understand how Spirit of Eight evolved it helps to get to know more about Carla’s Dickhaut, our founder/ Program Developer/Lead Facilitator, and about Renatus  W. Van Daelen, our facilitator for both Equine Assisted Healing for Individuals with Disabilities and Life Skills Training.

Carla has designed Equine Assisted Healing Programs based on her life-long experience with equine, an extensive time studying under Aboriginal Elders, and years of experience as a child and youth worker as well as in outreach and in-home support.

Both Carla and Rene have been invited to help with a University of Alberta (U of A) study for Hippotherapy (click to learn more).

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About Founder, Carla Dickhaut

 In addition to the conventional, Carla has benefitted from a rather adventurous, self-determining education.  Starting at a very young age she felt destined to be with horses and in pursuing this passion  has become a breeder and trainer.  More about Carla and her horses.

Carla has also gained extensive experience in her satisfying career as a Child and Youth Worker, particularly with Aboriginal people.  More about her work.

Her most rewarding and edifying educational endeavour has been her eighteen years of study under Aboriginal Elders and her commitment to Sundance. More about this interesting experience.

 Merging her knowledge and understanding of Aboriginal and Métis traditional ways with her experience in helping people Carla  developed her Equine Assisted Healing Programs.  She has had success helping people with depression, cognitive therapy, speech therapy, anger management, and other types of problematic developmental issues.  Carla loves this type of healing work.
Read more.


About Renatus W. Van Daelen (Rene) - Facilitator

Rene is skilled with horses and people.   He facilitates two specialized programs, Shining Moon,  Equine Curative Interactions  for Clients with Disabilities, and Down to Earth Boosters, our Life Skills Training Program.

More than twenty years ago Rene’s first encounter with a horse was a life changing experience for him so he is able to interact very well with clients in need.   Learn More


Helping People to Develop New Behavior

 
 Pathways to Overcome Challenges

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