The Equine Psychotherapy Institute

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Practitioner Presence & Self-Care


Three Day Personal Development program for Equine Assisted Practitioners, therapists and horse people.


Our Practitioner Presence & Self-Care Program focuses on:

  • Self-Care practices for every-day use
  • Safe and inspiring Horse-assisted experiences
  • Nourishment practices for the body, mind and spirit with horses
  • Horse Wisdom practices
  • Practical Self-Compassion, Presence and Mindfulness principles and practices
  • Innovative conceptual maps and self -practices in embodiment, emotional regulation, self-inquiry and self-discovery
  • Horses as supports, teachers and assistants in self-discovery, self-regulation and self-care practices
animal assisted therapy dog

Who is this program for?

  • Equine Assisted Practitioners – Equine Assisted Psychotherapists, Equine Assisted Learning Practitioners and Equine Therapists looking for personal development that is emotionally safe and horse-inspired!
  • Horse People interested in Self Discovery and Self Care practices
  • Animal loving Psychotherapists, Mental Health Practitioners, Counsellors, Psychologists, Psychiatrists, General Practitioners, Allied Health practitioners and Body Workers looking for personal development and self-care sustenance and support
  • People committed to Self-Care practices that nourish body, mind and spirit.
  • Teachers, Integration Aides, Disability Support Workers who are seeking self-care and love animals
  • Horse Riding Instructors seeking time out and self-care
  • RDA trainers/ volunteers looking for nourishment with horses
  • People passionate about Experiential Learning, Outdoor Education, Animal Assisted Interventions
ecotherapy plant

How is the training delivered?

The program is delivered in-person in collaboration with our herd, our co-facilitators, at EPI HQ near Daylesford in Victoria.

Our Horse Team – Co-facilitators

You will meet our wonderful and inspiring team of equine friends! Our herd is a free-roaming herd of 12 horses who have been supporting people to grow, learn and heal for over 10 years in our innovative equine assisted education, training, psychotherapy, personal development and leadership programs.

We have a mixed herd of predominantly Arabians, Arabian-crosses, alongside a Friesian and Stock Horse. The herd members include male and female horses, of all ages, sizes, colours and temperaments, some experienced in horsemanship, some not started under saddle!

They are a family herd, who live and retire with our family on the property. Each horse is an individual, who belongs in the herd family, growing, changing and thriving together, with humans. They each have their unique gifts, talents and way of engaging, that we honour and learn from as our commitment to living the principles of Horse Wisdom.

ecotherapy gumnut

What will you experience?

  • A profound opportunity to slow down, attend to yourself, feel supported, and nourished in a beautiful, natural environment
  • Emotionally and physically safe, innovative experiences with horses – equine experiences designed to illicit personal development, support and self-regulation
  • Presence, Self-Compassion and Self-Care exercises
  • New Practices to enhance your wellbeing, that you can use every-day
  • New Conceptual Maps that you can use to continue with your personal growth and development journey
  • Masterful facilitation with professionals and people who live the work they teach
  • Pathways to further training in equine therapy, equine assisted psychotherapy and equine assisted learning, if of interest
What happens in EAL sessions

What are the Experiential Learning Objectives?

  • To learn how to engage with the natural world as a constant source of nourishment and sustenance
  • To learn or further develop Horse Wisdom practices
  • To understand the principles and practice of what causes unnecessary suffering
  • To understand and apply the RAIN method (Tara Brach) – to recognise, allow, accept, inquire and befriend your experience
  • To befriend your emotions and safely express your emotions
  • To understand the obstacles to being present to where you are
  • To understand the horses as your teachers and supports
  • To develop awareness of beliefs that limit your capacity for awareness, presence and self-regulation
  • To understand mindfulness practices and how to use them every-day, with and without horses
  • To explore ‘clearing your lens’ in dialogue with your habitual patterns that are no-longer serving you well
  • To understand and use self-compassion practices
  • To leave feeling replenished and inspired
What happens in EAL sessions

What can you expect from the training journey?

  • Experiential
    It is an experiential learning process
  • Emotionally Safe
    The program is delivered at a gentle pace
  • Practical
    The program is practice orientated
  • Horses as Teachers
    Integrating the horses as co-facilitators, assistants, teachers and supports for wellbeing and building awareness, presence and self-care
  • Conceptual
    You will be introduced to useful maps or frameworks to use to support your self-care practices everyday
  • Relational
    The model is Relational and grounded in relationship-based learning.

What is the Investment?

3 Day Practitioner Presence & Self-Care Retreat: $1,100 plus GST

Why Train with Us?

We are an established training organisation and have been training practitioners, offering psychotherapy and personal development courses and sessions for over 23 years.

We have a unique approach to EAP, and a highly qualified and experienced senior facilitators who live and breathe this presence-based, psychotherapeutic work with horses, animals and the natural world.

Who are our trainers?

This specialist self-care workshop is facilitated by our senior trainers, Meggin Kirby and Noel Haarburger who have a combined experience of well over 45 years!

Meggin Kirby
Author, Creator and Founder of EPI Model, Mental Health Social Worker, Gestalt Psychotherapist, I-Thou horsewoman.

Noel Haarburger
Psychologist, Psychotherapist, Gestalt Therapy Trainer, and Trauma Specialist and Assistant with Somatic Experiencing Australia.

Meggin and Noel are experienced trainers, psychotherapists, group facilitators, supervisors, consultants and registered mental health professionals whom live and learn with a herd of 12 horses, and 1 dog, 3 cats, 2 chickens, and 2 rabbits as part of their extended family.
Noel and Meggin facilitate the in-person training at EPI HQ near Daylesford in Victoria.