EPA developed from real experience of people with injury, illness or disability looking to personally develop and improve their life opportunities and wellbeing. Our philosophy is to offer the chance to participate in a community-based program, using horses, shared with others with similar life experiences. This is achieved through integrated sporting, health and community participation programs and the identification and creation of vocational pathways.
We use qualified dressage coaches and allied health providers providing services such as trauma counselling, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, sports psychology, nutritional advice, osteopathy and personal training.
Services are provided at monthly, 2-day weekend clinics held in Narre Warren North, Victoria. The clinics involve supervised mounted dressage lessons, and group and individual sessions with the allied health providers. Each participant has a set of agreed monthly objectives and goals against which their development is measured.
The program specifically includes the carers and families of the participants in order to promote a shared sense of success and achievement as goals are reached.
We think the program is unique in that it brings together a number of professionals from very different fields, where they develop one structured plan for each individual.
The EPA High Performance Program is targeted to support athletes with a disability to compete nationally and internationally in para-equestrian competition such as the Paralympics.
I saw a child who couldn't walk,
sit on a horse, laugh and talk.
Then ride it through a field of daisies
and yet he could not walk unaided.
I saw a child, no legs below,
sit on a horse, and make it go
through woods of green and places he had never been
to sit and stare,
except from a chair.
I saw a child who could only crawl
mount a horse and sit up tall
Put it through degrees of paces
and laugh at the wonder in our faces
I saw a child born into strife,
Take up and hold the reins of life
and that same child was heard to say,
Thank God for showing me the way.
EPA are very grateful for the support we receive from our donors, corporations, and the community.
We can’t imagine where we would be without all the amazing volunteers and help we get from individuals who put in their time to see our vision come to life.
Our High Performance program would simply not be possible without the assistance of this amazing organisation.
Our organisation relies on the dedicated commitment of our hard working volunteers. Their tireless efforts can be seen on the smiles of every rider that comes through our doors.