Thrive at Augusta Encourages a Little Horseplay

Community launches new equestrian therapy to assist seniors

Augusta, GA (Jan. 25, 2021) – Thrive at Augusta has introduced a new form of therapy to area seniors. Horses provided by Augusta Aviation’s Steven Gay now reside on the property, allowing community members to experience the beauty of these majestic animals while offering them fresh air and outdoor activities. The partnership developed naturally between Gay, who needed assistance providing for the horses, and Thrive at Augusta, which was seeking ways to incorporate new activities into resident life. The response from residents has been overwhelmingly positive since the program began in November, with residents sharing that the horses make them smile and bring them a sense of peace.

“The horses are a part of our Thrive family,” said Thrive at Augusta President, Melita Winnick. “Equine therapy for the residents encompasses petting, feeding, and enjoying the affection and beauty provided by the horses. To quote one of our residents, ‘The most graceful animal on earth is a horse.’”

Activities for community members and the horses vary. Many residents who grew up with horses come to the barn with Gay to groom and pet them, while others are content to sit and watch them roam. Other residents like Melissa Tobakos say they enjoy “just waving to them as they drive by.” In the future, Gay and the Thrive team hope to expand the horse therapy program by creating a petting area inside the barn where residents can relax and enjoy the horses independently and on a more regular basis.  

“I am proud to be able to offer this program to the residents of Thrive at Augusta,” said Gay. “The horses are definitely enjoying themselves — they’re getting so spoiled. It’s a joy to see residents visit the barn regularly to share childhood memories of raising, riding and showing horses. Their memories are so vivid; it’s like we all step back in time. I could listen to them all day.”

This addition of horses at Thrive at Augusta illustrates Thrive’s larger commitment to shifting the industry clinical experience to a human experience. By continuing to add beneficial programs like this to their communities, the company continues to elevate the quality of life for older adults.

Download the press release!

DOCX - 27 Kb

Brianna Poplaskie

BRAVE Public Relations

Get updates in your mailbox

By clicking "Subscribe" I confirm I have read and agree to the Privacy Policy.

About Thrive Senior Living

About Thrive Senior Living:
Thrive Senior Living designs, develops, and operates innovative communities across the country that offer independent living, assisted living, and memory care. Thrive strives to build communities for older adults in a way that enriches lives through every dimension of health and wellness, and in doing so, elevates and honors these incredibly valuable members of our society. Privately held and headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, Thrive has been named a “Great Place to Work” by Activated Insights for six consecutive years. The company currently operates communities in Alabama, Georgia, and New Jersey with continued growth in primary and secondary markets throughout the United States including Florida. For more information, please visit