Two organisations focusing on horse-human interactions are joining forces with the aim of creating a single research platform that will act as a repository for information pertinent to the field of equine-assisted services.
Pebbles Turbeville, executive director of the US-based Horses and Humans Research Foundation (HHRF) and Roisin Brennan, executive director of Ireland-based Federation of Horses in Education and Therapy International AISBL (HETI), say both organisations have overlapping missions and visions, focused on promoting sound practice in the field of equine-facilitated interventions, development of the practitioner, and the care, well-being, and role of the equine.
“Both organisations’ strategic plans emphasize education based on rigorous research, however there is consensus that access to quality research is a global barrier,” they said.
To help close this gap, HHRF and HETI have launched a feasibility study for the development of a central international knowledge bank where global research data can be pooled, organised and easily accessed by all who want to enhance the field of human services that incorporate horses.
HHRF is dedicated to funding research to investigate the equine-assisted activities and therapies field. Since its founding, it has awarded more than $650,000 in professional research efforts led by 14 research teams. HHRF is a non-endowed foundation dependent solely on donations.
HETI’s mission is to facilitate the worldwide collaboration between organizations and individuals whose objectives are philanthropic, scientific and educational in the field of equine-assisted activities and therapies. The not-for-profit organisation was established in 1974 and has members in more than 45 countries.