Karen and Ken Stewart assumed operations of
Hoofs 4 Healing Equestrian Services, Inc. in March
2019 and relocated the program to Bloomingdale.
They both have had a love for horses their entire
lives, and they feel that there’s no other joy on this
earth that warms their spirits more than to see children
smile and their eyes light up when they see
their favorite horse.
At Hoofs 4 Healing a child gets to find acceptance,
kindness, joy and movement through Equine
Assisted Activities Therapy. This is their sport, not
soccer, basketball or cheerleading – just horses, just
therapy, just a one on one connection with their
special horse. They may not be able to walk or run,
but they can ride and feel the movement of walking.
They may not be able to move their hands or
legs, but they can feel the breath of a horse against
their hands, and they can glide in the saddle like
they are flying as they are led around the arena. A
day at Hoofs 4 Healing is all about them.
Karen will soon be a certified PATH International
instructor. She’s from Savannah and fell in love with
horses at a young age. Her dad, Gerald Douberly, a
renown certified farrier and blacksmith for over 40
years, raised her around horses. He owned 20 to 30
horses, and she would spend weekends and summer
days riding from morning till night.
Ken is a Vietnam Veteran and served as a Force
Recon Marine, and he’s originally from Columbia,
S.C.. He enjoys training horses, trail riding and taking
care of the ranch, but most of all, he enjoys
walking beside these special riders and experiencing their joy.
Karrie Griffin Henry is a fifth generation equestrian, receiving her first pony from her great grandfather when she was three. Some of her fondest memories are of riding her Welsh Pony, Lady, alongside her mother on her Appaloosa down the dirt roads of Savannah. Love of all things equine runs deep in Katie’s blood.
As a child, Karrie took riding lesson from the legendary Dale Thorpe at Sa-Hi Stables. In addition to the basics of riding, Mrs. Thorpe taught Karrie the etiquette, knowledge and skills required to become a certified instructor for The Professional Association Therapeutic Horsemanship (PATH International). It was in the Sa-Hi Stables arena while cooling down a horse that Karrie had her first vision of teaching special individuals how to ride a horse. This dream would eventually become a reality in the form of Hoofs 4 Healing.
Karrie first witnessed the benefits of equine therapy in 1999 when she lifted her nephew who has cerebral palsy onto the back of a thin framed Palomino named Skipper at the Horsin’ Around Therapeutic Center. In 2007 Karrie became certified as a Therapeutic Riding Instructor through North America Riding for Handicap Association (NARHA), now called Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship (PATH International). After almost 20 years of volunteering at Horsin’ Around working with special needs children, active military, and veterans, Karrie became the Director of Operations in 2011.
In 2013, Karrie decided to launch her own program, Hoofs 4 Healing, utilizing the horses to their highest capacity to bring her passion to life for others in the safe and structured manner that PATH International has in place.