Nancy Pitchford-Zhe, Co-Host of Around the Barn with Heads Up
Around the Barn every Saturday 9 AM - 10 AM
Founder Heads Up Therapy On Horseback Nancy Zhe – Host-Producer “Around The Barn With Heads Up”
I am often asked, “How did you start Heads Up Therapy On Horseback?” I often quip, “I was born with manure in my veins, and that started it all.”
At sixteen months old, I received a Christmas gift. The gift was a rocking horse named Tony. I grew up in a dysfunctional family and animals were my best friends. We understood each other, I could communicate with them.
My uncle Walter was blind. The first time we met I was three years old. I was fascinated by what he could do without sight. Play the piano. Take care of his invalid sister. I baby sat a child with mental retardation.
Then I went through a life altering experience. That is when my horse “Dusty” entered my life. Some deaf friends taught me a little sign language. One day while riding Dusty, I thought about what she meant to me. I thought about deaf children, and other children who used sign language to communicate. “Who could teach them to ride?” That thought was the birth of Heads Up Therapy On Horseback.
In 1986 she founded Heads Up Therapy On Horseback for Disabled Children, she was set advisor for the North American Riding For The Handicapped Association on a project with President and Nancy Reagan. In addition, she was one of the founding members of CALNET (California Network for Equestrian Therapy) and conducted many training workshops for this association. She is a Master Instructor and Administrator in the discipline of equestrian therapy. From 1995-1996 she produced and hosted “Animal Talk” for SCVTV.
Now, 26 years later we are adding a new program to Heads Up. Horses For Heroes for returning combat veterans. They have taken care of us, now it is time for us to take care of them. We are fundraising this year to raise $35,000 to launch this program as soon as possible. All donations are tax deductible, and services are free to veterans.