The Pennsylvania Council on Therapeutic Horsemanship (PACTH) was founded in 1984 as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. The Mission of PACTH is to create awareness of the benefits horses can provide children and adults with disabilities and to encourage the development of services for programs offering all types of equine assisted activities and therapy (EAAT), through education, research and application.
The PACTH offers a wide variety of educational opportunities. In addition to the three Phases of the Pennsylvania Qualified Instructor Program (PQI), the PACTH is known around the world for the quality of its conferences held at the regional, national and international levels; the hands-on clinics and seminars benefiting both the membership at-large as well as seasoned instructors; the breadth of the professional qualifications held by the faculty; and, the depth of subjects addressed in all continuing education opportunities.
The PACTH Pennsylvania Qualified Instructor (PQI) Training Program is held in the highest regard by insurance carriers (liability), employers and adjunct certification programs. The rigorous program is held in three phases: Phase I is a five-day workshop providing both lectures and hands-on opportunities; Phase II is a four-day workshop utilizing role playing and other practical applications; and Phase III is the final certification held on-site allowing candidates to demonstrate their skills in a favorable setting. For volunteers, parents, support staff, and medical and mental health professionals who are interested in becoming more knowledgeable about EAAT, the Phases can be taken at the Instructor-in-Training level. Candidates at this level do not demonstrate riding skills nor do they proceed to Phase III for certification. Individuals intending to be full certified can test to the Instructor or the Master Instructor levels.
PACTH has certified therapeutic riding instructors from all over the United States and abroad (just because Pennsylvania is in the name, certification is not limited to residents of Pennsylvania). It is important to remember that if you are a PQInstructor (having successfully completed Phase III), you may make application to PATH Intl. (formerly NARHA) for certification through alternative credentials. Dual certification is a wonderful way to show your riders that you are dedicated to your profession!
PACTH membership is based upon the calendar year - January 1 through December 31. Memberships are available in a variety of packages, so you should be able to find a membership level that suits your needs and involvement with the PACTH. Memberships are available as follows: