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Our Model: Partnering With Horses

Our model for Equine Assisted Learning is to positively impact people's lives by working through objectively driven programs while keeping the horse's welfare at the base of all we do. This is a learner-established educational, experiential program facilitated within a group format or one-on-one and focuses on ground activities rather than riding horses.

It is essential that you learn to hear horses in their world to understand what your horses are telling you to achieve the objectives for your clients! 

As specialists in this industry and leaders in this well-established Certification, we have made it our mission to “partner” with horses versus “using” them as tools. You will learn to hear the horses in their world. It’s an unparalleled student experience.
 

The horse’s welfare is at the foundation of this certification.


Using horses is no way to get results, but rather working with horses as the teachers and understanding what they are saying is how to instill long-lasting learning that is compelling for your clients and safe for your horses. It's about learning the horse's culture and their language versus expecting him to understand and adhere to yours. We must thoroughly know how the horse communicates in every way. The welfare of the horse is paramount! We are proud to be partnering with Equine Guelph, the horse owner’s Centre at the University of Guelph to promote the welfare of the horse in this well-established certification.

The horse is known as "the teller of truth" who desires to "do the right thing". It is believed that a horse's spirit will lead individuals in the "right direction" and will assist them in understanding their place in the circle of life. You’ll not only discover that your horse has way more to say, but you’ll also find yourself forming a new perspective on how brilliant they are at being the teacher. This will help you to better understand the “how-tos” for facilitating your clients with success!

As facilitators, if we are willing to listen to our horses, they can assist us with guiding humans to be all they can be in their lives. By including horses in specially designed educational experiences, equine-assisted specialists have significantly multiplied the participant’s rate of success to self-discovery. Through their intuitive nature and innate sensitivity, horses can provide facilitators with a window into the participant’s learning style.

We collaborate with global specialists to ensure the 'Welfare of the Horse' comes first.
   
 

We work with the originator and designer of this objectively driven Equine Assisted Learning curriculum!


All of the exercises were created through research on how human beings learn and how wild horses communicate, and then she brought these two research pieces together to create all of these objectively driven programs. Each exercise has an objective that is interlaced into the next program so that your participants keep learning and building stronger skills each week, hence, creating an armour of skills to take into the world! This Certification is research-based and proven to work!

The horse's job is to speak to the clients through their body language to help bring about the client's changes. Exercises are developed to encourage self-confidence through validated, hands-on experiences. The people are empowered to find answers to their own lives and move forward with newly acquired skills.

We don't call for a clinical professional to run our programs/exercises. You don't need to become a therapist or counsellor to conduct these objectively-driven exercises. It is an excellent addition for therapists, counsellors, and psychiatrists who want to work with the horse to aid their customers in treatment, adding a different perspective to helping your clients advance in their own lives. We do know; however, that should you work with these magnificent animals, simply being in the presence of horses will be a therapeutic experience.

We are proud that this course and all of it's Facilitators are governed through the EAL Network to ensure the guidelines for integrity and ethics for working with both humans and horses are followed. There are no regulations in this equine industry and that is why we created our own checks and balances for the safety of our horses, our facilitators, and all clients who partake.

 

Click here to download the Effectiveness Model

 

 
   


"I waited 2 years to finally take the plunge -- it was worth the wait, worth my time, and hands down, worth the money. I researched every option I could find for training in this field and walked away knowing I made the right choice with Equine Connection!  From day one of the five day course, our instructors kept our attention, made us think and provided invaluable learning, both inside the classroom and inside the arena. I cam home to my horses with a refreshed awareness of their subtle communication and a renewed appreciation for the role in my life. I look forward to starting my business and feeling secure in the knowledge that I will never be alone in this journey!"
- Leslie



"No matter if I’m talking to a potential new client or I’m welcoming and new client into my program, I always talk about what a wonderful certification I have since 2016. I explained how after I was certified, Equine Connection stays in touch with me daily to keep me up to date and answer questions. I also have an entire community of fellow facilitators that are there to share ideas and support. When asked why I chose this certification, I honestly reply because they didn’t leave me the day I got certified. They have helped me build a business I never thought was possible. I make a living with my horses helping others! What else would you want?" 
~Angela Cardenas



"Equine Connection and the training I received from Kari, Carolyn and the crew, has been the absolute missing piece to my life, purpose and career. The course exceeded my expectation on so many levels, and the on-going support has been first class and given me everything I have needed to start and grow my own EAL business from home." 
~ Jess Keenan 


 

Why Certify?


The Equine Assisted Learning Certification Course ensures the technical competence of their trained professional facilitators. Certification exams go beyond training by providing an objective measurement of a facilitator's knowledge and skills. 

 

 

Prerequisites


Simply put - a love of people and horses!
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Equine Connection's certified course holds the highest of standards and ethics for the welfare and safety of horses and all clients taking any of the equine assisted learning exercises/programs. Organizations and clients that you will work with are sold on the fact that there is a governance body ensuring all certified facilitators are adhering to the SAFETY and REGULATIONS of what this certification holds.

What Is A Facilitator’s Job? And Why Are We Needed?


As an Equine Assisted Learning Facilitator, we use a highly proven technique, to empower people to acquire, apply, and retain life skills - with the most unique and powerful four-legged teacher(s), the horse(s).

These programs help people to make their own decisions, help them to take responsibility for their own choices and actions, and come to healthy conclusions about the choices that they make.
When learning new skills, we are typically confined to a box, where we aren’t given the freedom to explore learning in a way that works for us each individually.

In an Equine Assisted Learning setting, participants have the opportunity to try things differently.

As an Equine Assisted Learning Facilitator, our roles include:

  • 🐴 Ensuring the safety of all horses and participants.
  • 🐴 Stepping in’ to guide the participant’s to understand what it is the horse is “saying” and understand how they can apply that learning to their own lives.
  • 🐴 Providing encouragement and support.
  • 🐴 Encouraging participants to think outside the box, take risks, or try on new roles.
  • 🐴 Resolving conflict.
  • 🐴 Empowering clients to find success!

A common misconception people have about our role as a facilitator is that we are therapists or counsellors.

That is false!


We do not dig to discover the participant’s feelings. Nor do we try and figure out “how” or “why” the participants got to where they are at.

​Instead, we work with the horse(s), who acts as a “barometer” for where the people are at - giving us, as facilitators, a window of opportunity to guide and assist our client’s learning journey, of building foundational life skills.

This means that the horse(s) reacts simply off of the participant’s stimulus - whether it be calm, confused, frustrated, or excited.

And, we as the facilitator, help the participant to understand what it is the horse is “saying” so that they can apply the lessons they’ve been taught by the horse back to their everyday life.

This is a very unique, interactive and FUN way of learning...

However, it typically pushes people outside of their comfort zone - causing that ‘uncomfortable’ feeling, which often leads to some form of conflict, chaos or disorder. It is entirely normal and expected that teams within this setting will experience this - however, our role is to guide them back to success where they take what they’ve learnt in this ‘new, uncomfortable’ zone, and make room for growth and creativity, empowering them to expand their skillset, mindset, their knowledge of self and expand their individual comfort zones.

We provide a safe, supportive, positive space for people so that they can be empowered to make changes in-the-moment AND adjustments to their lives, habits and behaviours. Our role is to ensure that they find success while they work through different objectively-driven tasks and exercises!
Although these programs are typically held in a group setting, the unique facilitation technique that we use in our programs recognizes the individuals’ journey of learning.

We as the facilitators bring every circumstance, situation, accomplishment, etc. back to the horse and what the horse is teaching, to help people to see what they are capable of, and what skills they need in their lives to move forward!
 

The Equine Connection Theme Song - Written by Equine Connection Certified Facilitator, Armond Duck Chief, a Juno Award nominee for Aboriginal Album of the Year at the Juno Awards of 2016 for his album The One.