Our Countryside Learning Centre (CLC) is a vital part of our vocational learning programme at Prior’s Court, providing a varied programme of animal therapy, animal husbandry and vocational opportunities such as cleaning the stables, feeding the animals and learning how to handle them.

For many of our young people, communicating their needs and feelings is very difficult as most are pre-verbal and experience high levels of anxiety. As well as providing key skills and learning opportunities, working with our animals means communication barriers are broken down; many young people make important connections with the animals, which can bring about positive change and support significant progress.

Vocational Skills Instructor Maxine Allen remembers how one student‘s behaviour had become so challenging, he was at risk of exclusion. But the CLC staff had recognised a spark in his eye when he was with them. The team engaged him in animal therapy every day and his behaviour calmed and improved dramatically.

We have a number of different animals, numerous paddocks, a nature trail, a yard, classroom, willow area for stories and quiet time, a therapy paddock, 4 stables and a boot room.

All of our animals have been kindly donated, but the cost of looking after them is around £4,800 per year so we are asking for your help to provide their food, bedding and care costs. For example:

  • Coral, Lucky and Rick the rabbits cost £50 each per year
  • Dizzy the goat costs £100 per year
  • Patch and Pippin the piglets cost £150 each per year
  • Sarah, Sue and Dan the sheep cost £150 each per year
  • Our pony, Merrylegs costs £560 per year
  • Our six guinea pigs cost £150 in total per year
  • 11 chickens cost £240 in total per year
  • Food for all animals costs £2,950 per year

Donate to our Countryside Learning Centre Appeal