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Debuting in January, a two-story equestrian center provides a new centerpiece for Oxford Treatment Center’s residential campus, situated atop a hillside across the lake from the main meeting facilities.
With the center’s completion, Oxford Treatment Center’s herd of 10 equine therapy horses now reside on site, with a separate stall for each horse. Behind the equestrian center, a new large arena provides an enclosed space for patients to work with horses, complementing riding opportunities on the campus and along trails in the surrounding wooded hills.
The second level of the equestrian center features a large meeting room as well as four residential suites to accommodate visitors to the campus. Outdoor areas include a balcony deck and covered picnic area.
The facility’s addition reflects the importance of the equine therapy program within Oxford Treatment Center’s addiction treatment program — one that employs a multifaceted approach to reach patients through both traditional and experiential means.
“It’s been amazing to watch this program grow,” said Dale Phillips, EALS, who has led Oxford Treatment Center’s equine therapy program since its inception.
The equestrian center is adjacent to a set of three new patient cabins, which house Oxford Treatment Center’s Young Adult Program. Their proximity underscores the program’s close relationship to equine therapy, as patients take responsibility for a horse as part of their treatment program.
The center also serves as a base for the Young Adult Program’s new wilderness therapy component, led by W. Troy Young, M.Ed., MA, NCC.
Clinical Therapist Clint Crawford, MS, program coordinator for the Young Adult Program, said patients in the program receive the same treatment for addiction that patients in the standard program receive — but in a different package.
“It’s really hard for patients in that age group to sit through an hour-and-a-half lecture,” he said. “Our program gives them an opportunity to learn by seeing and doing. The more easily they can absorb these messages, the better a foundation they will have for recovery.”
The ever-broadening range of experiential therapies means more tools for addiction treatment professionals to use in crafting each patient’s individualized treatment program.
“Because our program is so multifaceted, there is something we can put into each patient’s treatment plan that will keep them engaged throughout the program,” Executive Director Duke Vinson, LPC, NCC, said. “What our patients experience is truly the opposite of a one-size-fits-all, one-dimensional treatment program. We’re working hard to confront the disease of addiction from every possible angle.”
The new equestrian center facility’s suites for overnight guests will also make it possible for Oxford Treatment Center to include visiting professionals in its programs, both to work with patients and to learn about Oxford Treatment Center’s operations and treatment approach.
About our Young Adult Program | Q&A with Staff Psychiatrist and Medical Director Stephen Pannel, DO