Training specialists for the preparation of therapy horses for Equine Facilitated Therapies and Activities

Project Reference:

Intellectual outputs

During the project, there was an interdisciplinary discussion on terminology worldwide. We decided to follow The Horses in Education and Therapy of International (HETI) guideline and change the term “Equine Facilitated Therapies and Activities” into “Equine Services Assisted” (EAS).

The Evaluation System of Equines Taking Part in Equine Assisted Services (EvaSE)

In Europe, there is no uniform (or generally identical) system of preparation and Evaluation of equines participating in Equine Assisted Services (EAS). The project thus responds to a current need for ensuring the safe training and welfare of equines included in EAS, including methods of evaluating their suitability. In the EU, there is a need for more specialists to carry out special training and preparation of equines for this purpose. Equines are currently being trained in various ways, which may lead to welfare problems and variety in the quality of the EAS. We aimed to share knowledge and experiences of partner organisations and develop a document that all partners have approved.  

This methodological document presents the Evaluation System of Equines Taking Part in Equine Assisted Services (EvaSE). A comprehensive framework was developed as part of the ERASMUS+ 2020-1-CZ01-KA204-078277 project from 2020 to 2023. The project brought together a team of 24 specialists from six countries, united by the goal of advancing EAS specialists by prioritising best practices, safety, equine welfare and well-being. 

EvaSE provides more insights into the comprehensive evaluation process. It offers structured Evaluations, guidelines, or tools explicitly tailored for evaluating equines in EAS programs.

The Book of Abstracts 

Here is a Book of Abstracts as an outcome of the European Conference on Equine Facilitated Therapy organized in Sepetember 2021

Benefits for participants professional growth

It was a great experience. I see the most significant contribution in increased professional and didactic competencies. For teaching, it was a great benefit to be acquainted with local breeds of equines in partner countries and familiarised with another view of EAS to unify the knowledge and requirements of EAS fields.
Vanda CaskováPhysiotherapist, Česká hiporehabilitační společnost, z.s., Czech Republic
Each country of project had focused unique and initial objects in the project. It means that we have reached at least 4 new professional point of view in our area. I think it is big step to go forward for me.
Bülent Okan MİÇOOĞULLARISport (Riding, Horse) Psychologist, Nevşehir Hacı Bektaş Veli University, Türkiye
The exchange of experience about an Equine evaluation and EAS in general. The deeper knowledge and a wonderful network within EAS.
Irmantė GimbutaitėPhysiotherapist, Neigaliuju jojimo asociacija, Lithuania

Benefits for participants personal growth

New friends and getting to know other cultures and traditions
Jurgita RutkienėPhysiotherapist, Neigaliuju jojimo asociacija, Lithuania
Cultural understanding and language skills
Sanna Mattila-RautiainenResearcher, Physiotherapist. Suomen ratsastusterapeutit ry, Finland
It has helped me to be more patient at times and clearer at other times. Also generating better leadership skills.
Sofia Hagelberg Researcher, Asociación Proyecto Caballo, Spain

Benefits for participants organisation

Our Association improved a lot getting a large network in Europe and getting connected to such experienced organizations.
Inês Pereira de FigueiredoResearcher, TKF-Research Group in Anthrozoology
For my association these opportunity has been a growing challenge to connect and share different experiences and learn how to work and coexist together without harming ourselves or the others (in a respectful attitude).
Carlos GanzabalEquine Assisted Learning accompanist, Asociación Proyecto Caballo, Spain
An Equine evaluation instrument for Equine Assisted Services was created, which we did not have in Lithuania
Lina ŠarkieneAlternative and supportive health care hippotherapy specialist, Neigaliuju jojimo asociacija, Lithuania