History and purpose


Refuge Services, Inc., a public, non-profit 501 (c) (3) organization, was established in Lubbock in September of 1999. In the past 20 years, Refuge Services has served over 10,000 individuals and families through equine-assisted therapy services.  We provide equine-assisted therapies to individuals of all ages, offering hippotherapy (H), therapeutic riding (TR), and EAGALA-Model equine-assisted psychotherapy (EAP) to children, adolescents, adults, veterans and their families with special needs and disabilities in Lubbock and surrounding areas. Refuge provides a therapeutic setting for physical, occupational, speech-language, or licensed counseling/therapy professionals to incorporate the therapeutic value of horses into their treatment plan. Incorporation of the horse, as a co-facilitator, provides the therapist with a uniquely effective tool to improve a diagnosed physical, cognitive, or sensory deficiency and/or facilitate positive change for clients with emotional, relational and/or psychological disorders. Sessions are available for individuals, families and groups. The mission of Refuge Services is to enhance individual, family, & group functioning by providing opportunities to develop skills for solving problems, overcoming obstacles, and reaching individual as well as group goals.

In 2019, Refuge Services served approximately 160 clients per week providing over 7500 client hours. In the past year, we have assessed over 80 veterans needing mental health services rating 4+ on all categories on the PCL-5 (PTSD assessment measurement tool). They are indicating extreme distress in life functioning. Majority of these veterans have been in traditional therapy and report being “Stuck” and/or “Nothing is Working.” Over 50% have either attempted suicide and/or contemplated it in the past 2 years. Due to positive program impact, we have also seen an increase in the number of veteran-to-veteran referrals as word of mouth about our veterans programs grows. Recently, our veteran program was spotlighted on Texas Country Reporter as a leader in equine therapy in the state of Texas. We were selected for our overwhelming positive outcomes on veteran’s recovery process. This has created a surge in awareness and those in need are reaching out in greater numbers. Refuge Services, Inc. is outstanding and unique in the following ways:

· Employs the author of the only textbooks in print on Equine-Assisted Psychotherapy which are taught in several universities around the world

· Employs 2 of the 14 internationally trainers in the field of EAP

· Employs two international supervisors for advanced EAP certification status

· Is among the first 50 to be certified in EAP in the world, with over 4000 mental health professionals now certified

· Is the first certified, “out-patient” EAP program in Texas, leading the state in this innovative approach.

· Is the largest equine therapy facility in West Texas and is one of the top EAGALA Military Program in the world, serving more veterans than any other program in the country.

· Asked by the Commanding Officer of US Marine Aircraft Group 24 in Oahu, Hawaii to provide a 2-day intensive EAP retreat in 2016 on the island for Unit 463, who had lost 16 members of Unit due to helicopter crashes & sudden deaths on base.

· Partners with local, regional, and statewide programs such as Ranch at Dove Tree, CLASS, New Legacy Home, Rescare, Caprock Home Health Services, Midland Vet Center, Starcare, Lubbock Vet Center, Lubbock Regional VA, & VetStar, and surrounding school districts, private counseling services, as well as direct referrals from parents, doctors, etc.

· Contracts with local and regional licensed counselors and school counselors to meet the needs of those with disabilities, at-risk children, veterans, and families.

Refuge Services, Inc. is a member of the international organization: Equine-Assisted Growth and Learning Association (EAGALA), leaders in the field of Equine-Assisted Psychotherapy emphasizing safety training and therapeutic techniques.  All activities are approved by EAGALA and PATH certifications.  Refuge Services’ Director of Equine Services is also trained by PATH, Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship, which provides national standards for therapeutic riding.


Nationwide, equine-assisted therapies have become a preferred form of treatment for many issues from disabilities to mental health and behavioral diagnoses. The rhythmic movements of the horse provide correction and rehabilitation to clients with muscle and speech limitations.  During the hour-long sessions, the therapist concentrates on improving the client’s physical, sensory, emotional, cognitive, and/or psychological deficiencies.

Lubbock's Refuge Services, Inc.

  • Serves a 37-county target area surrounding Lubbock with mobile services including the following counties: Deaf Smith, Randall, Armstrong, Hall, Brisco, Swisher, Castro, Parmer, Bailey, Lamb, Hale, Floyd, Motley, Cottle, Childress, King, Dickens, Crosby, Lubbock, Hockley, Cockran, Yoakum, Terry, Lynn, Garza, Kent, Stonewall, Scurry, Fisher, Mitchell, Howard, Borden, Nolan, Dawson, Andrews, Midland, Martin, and portions of southeast New Mexico.
  • Partners with local and regional programs such as MHMR, Children’s Homes, inpatient treatment centers, surrounding school districts, private counseling services, as well as direct referrals from parents, doctors, etc.
  • Contracts with local and regional licensed counselors to meet the needs of the clients.

Contact Us

Phone – (806) 748-7202

Fax – (806) 748-0972

Address – 8405 South M.L.K. Jr Blvd, Lubbock, TX 79404

Mailing Address: PO Box 53684 Lubbock TX 79453

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