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Unbridled Change

GUARDIAN PROFILE - Last Updated: 04/19/2017



Chief Staff Officer:  Michelle Holling-Brooks

Employees:   Full-Time:  2  Part-Time:  1  Volunteers:  25

Does your organization utilize a management company for management and administration? No

Describe your training process for employees and volunteers and the types of human resource documents used in your organization including job descriptions, evaluations, etc. Each employee or volunteer must spend the first 2 days simply observing clients and their interaction with the horses and complete a volunteer training. Volunteers fill out a liability waiver and receive a volunteer handbook as well as a client policies book. Board members and employees are given a handbook, bylaws, and list of expectations to represent our organization. Board members sign a contract. All people are given a risk management policy book during their initial training.

Governing Body:

Board meetings per year:  12

Number of Board Members:  7  Number of Voting Board Members:  6

Board Compensation:

Is Board Chair compensated?  No  Is Treasurer compensated?  No

Are there any other Voting Board Members that are compensated?  No

Board Relationships:

Are any members of the Board or Staff related to each other through family or business relationships? No

Board Affiliations:

Are any Board members or Staff associated with and/or compensated by another organization with a relationship or business affiliation to your organization? No

Conflict of Interest:

Does your organization have a written conflict of interest policy and regularly and consistently monitor and enforce compliance with the policy, including requiring officers, directors or trustees, and key employees to disclose annually interests that could give rise to conflicts?  Yes


1. What percent of your total programs and services are horse-related? 100

2. Describe your specific horse-related programs services or activities:
     Equine Assisted Psychotherapy - outpatient mental health utilizing EAP/EFP is our main focus working with over 90% of our clients.
Rhythmic Riding - a hybrid of mental health and therapeutic riding in which the goal is to develop self-regulation and stress management skills.
Equine Assisted Learning - all varieties working mainly with veterans and vocational training.
PTSD Program - Offers support to EAP/EFP services to veterans in groups of 10-15

3. Enter the total number of facilities/locations where the horses used in the conduct of your horse-related programs are housed and cared for: 1

4. Describe your non-horse-related programs, services or activities you provide, including those involving other animals. We do not provide any services that do not involve EAAT, outside of speaking at professional conferences about EAAT.

5. Does your organization operate programs involved with animals other than horses?  No


1. Describe your equine management philosophies, practices, policies and operations with respect to the use of the horses in your program, including the rehabilitation and retraining (if applicable), ongoing training, schooling and exercising plan for each horse and your policy as to the number and condition of the horses accepted by your organization. 
     We believe in working and training our horses in the naturalist way possible. We integrate natural horsemanship concepts from Carolyn Resnick, Parelli, and Clinton Anderson to train and retrain our horses in the program. Every horse spends 30-60 days with our trainer prior to rolling into services working with our clients. Each horse is evaluated on their temperament and suitability to ensure that they are given a job that matches with their personality, willingness, and training levels. Our herd of 13 horses is split in to two smaller herds that rotate active client hours monthly. During the "off" month, or vacation as we call it, the horses are groomed by volunteers and also given maintenance training and work to ensure that they are happy and healthy mentally as well as physically.

We currently at capped at 14 horses for our facility and budget. That allows us to meet both their training needs and health needs from vaccines, farrier work, and regular teeth floating. We have accepted horses from all walks of life including: rescues, donations, purchase, and free leases.

2. Describe how your horses are acquired (adoption, seizure, surrender, donation, purchase, auction sale, retirement). 
     Our horses are acquired by several methods.
1. Donations.
2. Facebook.
3. Adoption from other groups. (riding programs closing)
4. Refereed as abandoned by deceased owners.
5. Purchased as retired draft horses from Amish. (We call this a career change)
6. Adopted from families no longer interested in using them for traditional riding.

3. Describe under what circumstances horses leave your organization. Please describe in detail your horse adoption/fostering practices and procedures including any recruitment initiatives you have to attract potential adopters. Please include your policies and practices with respect to horses that are no longer useful or manageable and horses that need to be retired. 
     We try very hard to find a useful position for every horse in our program. There are several examples of the different shifts in jobs a horse might have in our organization. One is a horses that has been working in our mounted riding program is developing arthritis to the point that riding is no longer comfortable for them even with joint supplements. We move them over to the unmounted side of the program in which they do not have to carry a load and are used for leading lessons, grooming lessons, and unmounted equine assisted psychotherapy sessions. Once a horse shows that they are no longer interested in working on the unmounted side as well (typically it is because of age or possibly that their temperament is more happy working with just one person than multiple clients) we will look to adopt them out to a suitable home. The adoption process includes an application, farm visit, and a written agreement that we can have unscheduled farm visits to ensure the quality of care for the adopted horse. The adoption agreement also states that they cannot sell or re-home the horses without our written permission. We look for potential adoption homes with our volunteers and also with the local equestrian club, which we are active members of. If we can not place the horse in an adoptive home they are rotated to the retired herd - currently with 2 horses in it - to live out their days on our farm in dignity. Our retired horse herd has volunteers that groom them and care for them but they are no longer asked to work with clients.

4. For new horses, describe your initial assessment process for each horse (i.e. physical examination, test ride, health record, Coggins test, quarantine, veterinary consult, etc.). 
     Every horse spends 30-60 days with our trainer prior to rolling into services working with our clients. Each horse is evaluated on their temperament and suitability to ensure that they are given a job that matches with their personality, willingness, and training levels.
New horses are given an evaluation by our vet and given an inspection by our farrier. Updated shots, deworming, and other health needs are part of the process.
Each horse is given a test ride by 2 staff members, and then the staff members meet to discuss their assessment.

5. Describe your overall horse health care plan and how you assess and monitor the health of your horses on an ongoing basis. Include a description of your vaccination and worming schedule. Include a description of your health/veterinary care plan for at-risk animals, geriatric horses and horses with serious issues. 
     Our horses receive regular vaccine/vet checkups and we call the vet for an onsite visit whenever a health issue arises. The vet travels to our facility and checks all the horses and gives them shots twice a year. Our horses also get regular farrier visits approximately every 6 weeks depending on the need. Our de-worming supplies are donated and administered three per year, but our main de-worming is to do a fecal test and follow the vets suggestions.

Our vet helps us establish feeding/supplement needs for every horse.

Our horses are brushed after each session with a client. Each client also say "goodbye" (typically a hug) to the horse before returning it to the herd

Horses with serious health issues are retired from active work and not used in therapy session; instead they are fed, given health checkups regularly and meds as needed, regularly groomed by staff and volunteers, and allowed to live our their life being pampered.

6. What is the euthanasia policy? Please include specifically under what circumstances your organization will euthanize a horse and whether your organization will euthanize a healthy but difficult horse for space: 
     We want all our family to live out their entire lives at our barn.
Our organization will only euthanize a horse under the advice and direction from our vet. We don't believe in difficult horses, only difficult people. We have both of our employees screen horses before they are accepted into our program. This has led to no horses being difficult.

7. What is the breeding policy? Please include specifically if horses become pregnant while in your care, and if there is a no-breeding clause in the documentation your organization uses to adopt, donate, sell, etc. a horse: 
     We do not breed any of the horses we have at our facility. We do not board horses.

8. Does your organization provide horses to any facility to use in research or medical training? 

9. If your answer to Question 8 is 'Yes', please explain where and for what purpose horses are provided to use in research or medical training?  NA

10. Does your organization sell, donate or give a horse to an auction? 

11. If your answer to Question 10 is 'Yes', describe under the circumstances where you have sold, donated, or given a horse to an auction, or where you would sell, donate, or give a horse to an auction. NA

12. Does your organization place horses in foster care? 

13. If your answer to Question 12 is 'Yes', describe how foster homes are selected, screened, and monitored and address all the questions below for each foster home in the space provided: NA

14. What is the average equine adoption fee/donation received by your organization: Not applicable; None received

15. Adoption Fee Policies
  Not applicable.

16. What is your position regarding varying adoption fees vs. one set fee:
  Our organization has never considered this concept.

17. Provide any additional explanation to your answers if needed:


This section must be completed for each facility/location where the horses used in the conduct of your horse-related programs are housed and cared for. For example, if the applicant is involved with horse rescue and utilizes foster care facilities, the applicant must complete this section for each foster care facility. If the applicant provides equine assisted activities/services to the public at more than one location, the applicant must complete this section for each location that horse-related services are provided. If your organization uses the facility of another organization, please enlist the aid of that organization in answering the questions.

Total facilities at which our organization operates horse-related programs: 1


Location 1 of 1
Halterman Indoor arena.

1176 White Oak Road Boones Mill VA 24065

1. Facility General Questions

1. Name of Contact: David Boyes

2. Contact's Phone: 540-354-8729

3. Contact's Email: david@theboyes.com

4. Does your organization own, lease or use a part of this facility? Lease

5. If not owned, provide the name, address, phone, email and contact person of the organization(s) and/or individual(s) who owns the facility: We own our facility and equipment, but the land is on a 25 year lease.
The land is in "The Brooks Family Trust" mailing address is 1176 White Oak Road, trustee of the trust is Jean Brooks. The lease is for 25 years and started in Sept. 2008. No email is available for the trust.

6. If your organization does not own this facility, does your organization have a written agreement with the owner? Enter Yes or No.   Yes

7. If your organization does not own this facility, please provide the following information below: Start date and end date of current written agreement (term) and what is the organization's plan for the end of the written agreement? 
     We have a written , signed, 25 year lease. Start date September 2008 end date September 1, 2033. At the end of the written agreement we will renew the lease, or the land will be willed to the organization in the owners will.

8. If your organization leases or uses a part of this facility, please provide the details as to what services are provided by the owner and if and how the owner is compensated.. 
     The owner is related to our executive director. The facility is given for free with no monthly rental fee. The owner will receive the benefits of any and all upgrades made to the facility.

9. Does your organization operate programs involving horses AT THIS FACILITY that serve individuals with special needs, including but not limited to equine assisted activities and therapies? Yes

10. Enter the total number of instructors/trainers (full-time and part-time) involved with your organization's horse-related programs at this facility: 2.

2. Facility Horse-Related Questions

1. Enter the total acreage dedicated specifically to the horses: 11

2. Describe the number and type of pastures and paddocks, fencing, enclosures, stabling including barns and run-in sheds. We have one large grazing pasture of 3 acres and 5 smaller paddocks, and 2 sacrifice areas. All the pastures and paddocks are a combination of four board fencing and 5 strand high tensile wire along the wooded areas. Of the paddocks, 3 of the 5 include run-in shelters for the horses. We have a 6 stall barn, 75x125 indoor arena, and a 950 square foot office area inside of the riding arena. The land is situated on a country road in the mountains of Southwest Virginia. The leased property is part of a larger 300 acres cattle farm that is open to trail riding for the horses as part of their training program.

3. Describe how you manage the use of your pastures/paddocks given the size and number of your pastures/paddocks and the number of horses you have at this facility.
     We have a 9 acre footprint that includes an indoor area and 3 day paddocks on 2.5 acres and 6 acres of grazing pasture that is divided into 1 acre sacrifice paddock, 1/2 quarantine paddock, and 3+ acre grazing pasture. We have split our large herd of 13 horses into 2 smaller herds - gelding and mares. They rotate between the grazing pasture and the indoor arena site with paddocks every 3-4 weeks.

4. How many hours of daily turnout do the horses get? (Estimate or Average) 16

5. Describe the area where your training, riding and equine related activities are conducted, including what type of footing/surface is utilized and what factors were considered to determine the suitability and condition of the area for the activities conducted.
     Our indoor and outdoor arenas have washed blue stone dust footing that is dragged and watered at least weekly. The horses are typically working in sessions in the indoor arena. Training for the horses can take place in one of the arenas or outside in a hay field or on the trails. We find that the horses enjoy getting out of the arena to recharge and work on basic horsemanship skills instead of working them continually in the arena.

6. Is the facility in compliance with the Care Guidelines for Rescue and Retirement Facilities prepared by the American Association of Equine Practitioners (whether or not your organization is directly involved with rescue and retirement)? Yes

7. If no, please explain and specifically describe the areas in which the facility is not compliant. Not Applicable

8. If this facility is recognized as compliant with the published standards of another applicable organization, and/or accredited by another applicable organization, including any state licensure or registration process, please provide the details.

9. Describe the availability/accessibility of emergency horse transportation at this facility.
     We currently own a horse trailer capable of safely moving 2 horses and we have four wheel drive vehicles with the towing capacity and electric brakes required to safely tow the horses.

10. Do the horses have specific tack assignments? Yes

11. Describe the plan, process and/or procedures to insure appropriate assessment of tack and the use for saddle fittings, tack, blankets, etc.
     The horses are checked quarterly to see if the tack assigned to them for riding is still in working order and also still fits properly by the equine riding instructor. All tack checks are recorded in the horse's log book and a tack sheet is updated quarterly to reflect the correct assignments.

12. Describe the system used by your organization to help staff and volunteers readily identify each horse on the property.
     We have a horse log book that is available for all volunteers and staff that interact with the horses. The book contains a picture, description, and brief overview of their personality and special needs. Volunteers are also required to record a brief narrative of their daily interaction with horses that includes: how long did they work with the horse, what did they work on, any issues , and if they had any medical needs what they were and how they addressed them.

13. Describe your housing plan and the turnout process/plan for horses normally stall bound.
     We prefer not to have horses stalled unless they medically need to be in a stall for their care. We believe that horses are healthier and happier in 24/7 turnout with their herd and proper shelter available to them. If a horse needs to be stalled their stall would be cleaned at least 2 times daily and fresh water and hay would be given.

14. Describe your feed, feed management plan and your guidelines for the use of supplements.
     Our veterinarian visits and gives her opinion 2 times a year on our horses weight, feed, and if she feels any supplements should be added.

15. How do you use the Henneke Body Conditioning Score to guide you in your hennekeing/exercising/use practices for each horse?
     With spring and fall shots our veterinarian checks our horses and suggests any changes that might need to occur to their feeding schedule based on their score.

16. Please describe your activities to limit or control the advent and spread of disease within your facility (Biosecurity plan). This should include but is not limited to your manure management and disposal procedures, your carcass disposal plan and your parasite control plan. Please indicate the role of your veterinarian in the development and implementation of your overall plan.
     We have our horses on a rotational de-worker schedule recommended by our vet office. Our paddocks are picked out daily for manure and our manure is composted prior to being spread on our grazing and hay field for fertilizer. We bury our horses on a far end of the farm away from the blueprint of our facility. During the summer months to control flies with feed our horses Rabon mineral blocks and spray down the paddocks with pest control.

17. Please describe your emergency preparedness plans that address weather related issues, fire safety procedures and/or any additional hazardous scenarios your facility could potentially experience.
     Our facility follows the inclement weather plan of the school system in which we live, Franklin County Schools. When the schools are closed due to snow , rain, or inclement weather, we are closed. Our closest fire station is 3 miles, and we would call 911. We currently do not have well water at our indoor facility but we have easy access to running water from a creek. The creek is close (under 100 feet) from our physical structure. We are also adjacent to a paved road. Our barn and grazing area does have running well water. In the event of an emergency at our main facility, we have run ins and shelters to place our horses in, until the main facility is made safe.

18. Please describe the security in place at the facility or facilities to restrict public access and to keep horses safe. Do you have a security system and/or on-premises caretaker?
     Our front gate locks with a padlock. There is only one entrance and exit to our facility. We currently have no cameras but plan on installing them with a grant in 2015. We do not have an on premise caretaker.

19. Provide the contact information for the individual or organization responsible for investigating abuse in the county where the facility is located, including mailing address, email address, and phone information.
     Franklin County Sheriff Department 70 East Court Street #101 Rocky Mount, VA 540-483-3000

20. Other than the animal control authority noted above, provide the contact information for all local, state and/or national authorities with whom your organization engages to address issues impacting horse welfare, including mailing address, email address, and phone information.

Veterinarian Information

View The Vet Checklist conducted on 03/27/2017

Veterinarian: Dr. Tanya Hatchett

Clinic Name: Clover Creek Animal Health    Street: 2940 W Main St    City: Salem  State: VA    Zip: 24153

Phone: 540-380-3433    Email: eqdr1@verizon.net

Instructors assigned to this Facility
(see Instructor Section)

     1. Instructor: Cami Murnane

     2. Instructor: Michelle Holling-Brooks

3. Facility Horse-Related Inventory Questions

1-a. Enter the total number of horses involved with your organization's programs that are currently housed at this facility: 14.

1-b. Enter the total number of horses housed at this facility: 12

1-c. Enter the maximum capacity of horses at this facility: 14

2016 Horse Inventory

1-d. Did your organization operate programs involving horses HOUSED AT THIS FACILITY during January 1-December 31, 2016? Please select Yes or No. Yes

Additional explanation:Our cost for supplements is included in Feed via our accounting system. Equine Dentist and medications are included in the Veterinarian cost via our accounting system

14 2-a. Total number of horses housed at this facility involved with your programs on January 1, 2016.

           + 0 2-b. Total number of intakes other than returns including donated, purchased, surrendered or rescued.

           + 0 2-c. Total number of horses returned.

14 = Total of 2a-2c

           - 0 2-d. Total number of horses adopted during the year.

           - 0 2-e. Total number of horses transferred to another facility during the year.

           - 0 2-f. Total number of horses deceased during the year.

0 = Total of 2d-2f

14 2-g. Total number of horses housed at this facility involved with your programs on December 31, 2016.

            14 2-h. Total number of horses not retired including horses undergoing rehabilitation and/or retraining.

            0 2-i. Total number of horses permanently retired.

2016 Horse Care Costs

$20393     Feed (Grain/Hay).

$0     Bedding.

$3230     Veterinarian.

$4410     Farrier.

$0     Dentist.

$0     Manure Removal.

$0     Medications & Supplements.

$4442     Horse/Barn Supplies.

$17097     Horse Care Staff.

$0     Horse Training.

$0     Other direct horse-related costs not including overhead or other program costs.

$49572     2016 Total Horse Care Costs

$     2016 Total Donated Horse Care Costs

5110     Grand total of the total number of days each equine was in the care of this facility during 2016.

Average cost per day per horse: $10
Question 3 ($49,572 ) divided by Question 4 (5110).

Average length of stay for an equine: 365 days
Question 4 (5110) divided by total of Questions 2a-c (14).

4. Self Assessment

I. Facility & Grounds

     1. Signage: Are rules, restrictions and warnings posted in or near appropriate areas? All of the time

     2. Lighting: Are rules, restrictions and warnings posted in or near appropriate areas? All of the time

     3. Emergency Contacts: Are emergency contacts posted in easily accessible locations for staff members if only cell phones are available or by each phone if landlines are available? All of the time

      4. First Aid Kits: Are human and equine first aid kits up-to-date and easily accessible? All of the time

B. Structural

      1. Condition of surface: Are horses provided a clean, dry area on which to stand & lay? All of the time

      2. Flooring - drainage & traction: Are floors constructed and maintained for both good drainage and traction? All of the time

      3. Ventilation for enclosed shelters: Is there adequate ventilation and circulation to control temperature and prevent buildup of toxic gases? All of the time

      4. Electrical wiring condition: Is wiring inaccessible to horses and maintained for safety? All of the time

      5. Fire Prevention & protective measures: Are fire prevention and protection measures including fire alarms, extinguishers and sprinkler systems, maintained and in good working order? All of the time

      6. Quarantine/Isolation: Is there a designated and separate area for isolation and quarantine? Yes

      7. Ill/injured containment: If horses live outside, is there a designated and separate area (stall or enclosure) to house ill/injured horses? Yes

      8. Are the horses housed in stalls/enclosures? No

C. Paddocks/Yard/Pastures/Turnout

      1. Turnout/Exercise Space & opportunity: Is there space and opportunity for horses to exercise or be turned out? All of the time

      2. Fencing - type, height, safety: Are these spaces appropriately fenced? All

      3. Use of electric wire or tape fence: Are electric wires or tape fence visibly marked? Please select 'All or NA' if electric wire or tape fence is not used. All or NA

      4. Condition of fences & gates: Are fences and gates functioning properly by being maintained and repaired when needed? All

      5. Condition of paddock/yard: Are these spaces free from equipment and debris? All

      6. Availability of shelter: Are natural or man-made shelters available to horses for protections from elements? All of the time

      7. Cleanliness: How often are these spaces cleaned? Daily or 6 Days a Week

II. Horse Care

      1. Hoof Care: How often is hoof care provided for each horse? Every 1-2 months

      2. Dental Care: How often is dental care provided for each horse? Annually

      3. Physical Examinations: How often is each horse given a physical exam by a veterinarian? Annually

      4. Horse checks: How often are horses visually and physically checked by personnel at the facility? 6-7 days a week

      5. Food & Water Storage: Are all hay, feed, grain and water sources clean, free of debris and chemicals, and protected from weather and other animals? All of the time

      6. Drinking water: How often do horses have access to clean drinking water? All of the time

6. Public-Related Questions
(required if programs serve individuals with special needs)

1. How many clients participate in the programs at this facility? 350

2. How many hours per week do you operate the horse-related programs at this facility? 40

3. How many weeks per year do you operate the horse-related programs at this facility? 50

4. What is the average wait list time? 3 Months(Weeks/Months/Years)

5. How many hours per day does each horse work? (Estimate or Average)

    Mounted: 1.00  Un-Mounted: 2.00  Total: 3

6. How many days per week does each horse work? (Estimate or Average) 3

7. What percent of your programs and services at this facility are mounted (vs. ground-based)? 20%

8. Provide any additional explanation to your answers if needed. To help ensure the reduction of burnout in our herd we rotate usage of our 2 herds - one month on one month off for "vacation". This rotational schedule for being in "working client mode" has dramatically reduced behavioral issues and burnout in our herd of 14 horses. During the "vacation" time off the horses are groomed daily by volunteers and ridden out on the trails by trained volunteers that allow the horse to be a horse and not have to take on the roles of a therapy animal.

V. Instructors/Trainers

     1. *Instructor: Cami Murnane

         *Facility Participation:

         Halterman Indoor arena.

Is the instructor certified by an organization that provides training in the programs, activities and/or services conducted by the organization? Yes

Certification 1:

Provide the name of the certifying organization.EAGALA

Enter the year that the certification was awarded. (yyyy)2009

Is the instructor's certification considered 'active' by the certifying organization? Yes

Briefly describe the nature/level of the certification.EAGALA Certification

Please use the space below to share any additional information about this instructor. Cami is originally from Columbus, Ohio and moved to Virginia to attend Radford University. Cami holds a Bachelor's Degree and a Master's Degree in social work along with a minor in psychology. Before coming to UBC Cami spent ten years working as a therapist at Rivermont School providing group and individual therapy to children with intense emotional and behavioral needs. Cami has always loved horses and working with children and is thrilled to have the opportunity to combine two of her passions in this way.

     2. *Instructor: Michelle Holling-Brooks

         *Facility Participation:

         Halterman Indoor arena.

Is the instructor certified by an organization that provides training in the programs, activities and/or services conducted by the organization? Yes

Certification 1:

Provide the name of the certifying organization.EAGALA

Enter the year that the certification was awarded. (yyyy)2004

Is the instructor's certification considered 'active' by the certifying organization? Yes

Briefly describe the nature/level of the certification.EAGALA Advanced Certified Equine Specialist

Certification 2:

Provide the name of the certifying organization.PATH International

Enter the year that the certification was awarded. (yyyy)2001

Is the instructor's certification considered 'active' by the certifying organization? Yes

Briefly describe the nature/level of the certification.Cert. Registered Therapeutic Riding Instructor and Cert. Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning

Please use the space below to share any additional information about this instructor. Holling-Brooks has a minor in Equine Management from Southern VA University, was co-captain of her IHSA riding team in college, trains horses in 3 day eventing and has been trained in Carolyn Resnick's Method for horsemanship and training. She is also a contracted mentor for EAGALA training other Equine Specialists in the field to gain their Advanced certification.