Castlerea prison is to lead the way in Ireland and Europe in developing a horse welfare centre.
The new centre – which originated from an idea by Jonathan Irwin, founder of the Jack & Jill charity – will be run in collaboration with the Irish Horse Welfare Trust.
It will be home to up to ten retired race horses.
Ten prisoners from across the prison service will take care of the animals and take part in an accredited training programme in animal handling for six to eight weeks
As well as providing therapeutic and mental health benefits, prisoners will learn practical skills to gain employment as stable hands and other jobs in the equine industry post release.
Martin Reilly is Governor of the Castlerea Prison.
Hear the full interview here on today’s Let’s Talk with MaryClaire Grealy.