CHANDLER, Ariz. (KSAZ) - It's a special program that brings kids and horses together. "Kira's Dream Horses" in Chandler allows kids of all abilities to work with horses, and to develop social skills and help heal.
"Kira is my daughter," said Janet Hoo. "I started it for my daughter I did it for my daughter."
Hoo founded "Kira's Dream Horses" one year ago, after she adopted her daughter from the Central Asian country of Kazakhstan. Kira faced many obstacles in learning a new language, but there were also physical struggles.
"What we realized out of every school, we went to recommended therapy," said Hoo. "Therapy was boring. She went to the same classroom, she played with the same toys, but she didn't want to go."
Hoo has a Masters in Education, and a Bachelors Degree in Equine Science. She put both to use. Kira and her best friend fuzzy have made great strides together, thanks to the program. A one-hour session include grooming, brushing, and walking the horse.
"She wanted to be here," said Hoo. "She wanted to do the exercises. She would go into the stalls and communicate with the horses. Her goods, her bads, everything she needed."
Hoo teaches about 100 students, students like her daughter, every week. Each develops a special bond with the animals, so the lessons go beyond what can be learned in a classroom.