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Horses, Healthcare & Science: Connected by Horsepower!

What we know, what we do and how we approach patients and horses in the world of Healthcare.

On the 24th of August 2019 the Organizing Committee of the Longines FEI European Championships Dressage, Jumping and Para-Dressage and LS&H Lawyers work together with the prestigious International Association of Human-Animal Interaction Organizations (IAHAIO). We kindly invite you to join us in our international conference where we dive into the world of Equine Assisted Interventions.

About a year and a half ago, Nicole Kien of LS&H Lawyers, a Rotterdam law office that focuses entirely on the Life Science & Health sector, and the general manager of the European Championships, Fred Rozendaal, came up with the idea of organizing the Horses, Healthcare & Science conference. While a few meters away from our conference hall top athletes (on two and four legs) show what horses and humans can accomplish together in sports, we zoom into a world where horses show extraordinary other talents (e.g.) to assist us together with professionals in interventions for vulnerable people, such as e.g. children with cerebral palsy, children with autism, patients/clients with psychiatric or psychological problems with coaching managers. Our key note speakers will present high level showcases, outcome of scientific research, international developments in healthcare systems, and zoom into the necessary conditions that need to be met if we wish to carefully, effectively and horse-friendly, engage in this world.

Keynote speakers
We are very proud to announce that Prof. Dr. Marie-José Enders-Slegers (NL), Professor in Anthrozoology at the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences at the Open University in Heerlen, President of IAOHAIO as well as Chair of the Institute for Anthrozoology will take care of the opening speech at our conference. She will introduce the subject, zoom in to the backgrounds, reveal recent scientific research and the most important international developments.

This is going to be very special! Never before there was so much knowledge and experience with regards to equitherapy, working with a horse as partner, from all around the world in one place! These professionals do pioneering research and are related to prominent universities. And more…. They all are very interesting people with a unique story.

The results of Nina Ekholm Fry (USA) in the USA by involving horses in the treatment of veterans are amazing. Martine Hausberger (FR) will present examples of using horses for treating autism. Roswitha Zink (AT) is biologist and psychologist. She has achieved a lot by treating children with brain injury or children in palliative care. Not using many words, just using horse language. Roswitha wrote an intriguing book about that method.

The story of Rupert Isaacson (USA) is about his experience with his own son, who has autism. Together they made a fascinating journey through Mongolia on a horseback. PhD student Marloes Ernst (NL) is researching this ‘Horse Boy’ method and will share her research method during the conference.

Machteld van Dierendonck (NL), who is well known in the equestrian world, takes a different look at equitherapy. She will discuss the wellbeing of the horses involved in these treatments.

And Irene Sanguin (IT) will explain how her Institute succeeded including equine assisted interventions in the Italian national health system.

In short, a variety of subjects, stories and experiences. Interesting not only for health or horse professionals, but also for people who can benefit from equitherapy. The conference is also a must for people who want to get equitherapy widely accepted.

Program* August 24th, Rotterdam

09:00 hrs. Registration guests, reception
10:00 hrs. Official opening
10:05 hrs. Welcome and announcing the program by Tom van ’t Hek (NL)
10:20 hrs. Opening by Prof. Dr. Marie-José Enders-Slegers (NL)
The history and state of art of practice and research of Equine Assisted Interventions.
10:45 hrs. Nina Ekholm Fry (VS)
Overview of Research and Report of Experiences of Equine interactions with veterans with PTSD
11:20 hrs. Martine Hausberger (FR)
Children with autism and equine assisted therapy (how and why it works).
11:55 hrs. Rupert Isaacson (USA)
Introduction into ATHENA-Horse Boy Method
12:05 hrs. Marloes Ernst (NL)
The Horse Boy Method: the challenges of research.
12:35 hrs. Lunch break
13:30 hrs. Welcome back by Tom van ’t Hek
13:35 hrs. Roswitha Zink (AT)
How horse assisted psychotherapy can help humans with traumatic experience striking the balance.
14:10 hrs. Machteld van Dierendonck (NL)
Equine Welfare and Wellbeing in Equine Assisted Interventions: safeguarding animal and human wellbeing, what challenges to overcome?
14:45 hrs. Irene Sanguin (IT)
Animal Assisted Interventions in a National Health Care System: The Italian approach.
15:20 hrs. Closing by Prof. Dr. Marie-José Enders Slegers en Tom van ’t Hek
15:30 hrs. Reception

Click here for more information.

*Please, note that the program is subject to change, and will be updated continuously up to the conference

Location: The Boathouse Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Saturday 24thof August
09:30-15:00 hrs., reception afterwards


(the tickets are including VAT and including coffee/tea, lunch and adrink after the congress): 
- Business € 180,- 
- Private € 150,-
- GroupSave € 140,- (at least 10 persons)

Don’t miss a hoof beat and get to know Rotterdam during your visit to the Longines FEI European Championships

Additional tickets and packages:
To fully enjoy your visit to Rotterdam and the Longines FEI European Championships it’s our pleasure to offer you additional tickets and packages. More information below:

EC- Conference dinner (Friday August 23, 18:00 – 20:30 hrs)
If you plan to arrive in Rotterdam the day before the conference you’re very welcome to join the EC conference dinner. Some of the keynote speakers will also attend the dinner and will like a chat with you and the other table companions on some of the topics of the conference. The 3-course dinner is including 4 drinks (beer, wine, soda, coffee or tea) and access to the EC-Boulevard with entertainment in the evening. (There is limited availability for these dinner packages)

EC-Boulevard entrance (August 23 & 24 ) 16:00 – 23:00 hrs

At walking distance from the Longines FEI European Championships and the Congress Centre there is the lovely Boulevard with trade stands related to equestrian sports and lifestyle. There is also a kids village and lots of food trucks and bars for a drink and a bite. Especially during the evenings this is THE place to be! With live music or great DJ’s every night. A great place to relax on Friday night or Saturday night after the conference. As conference attendee you will get a discount of € 10,- on your tickets for the Boulevard.

Rotterdam guided bike tour (August 24 16:00 – 18:30 hrs)

On Saturday the conference will be followed by cocktails. If you want to get to know the trendy city of Rotterdam we offer you the opportunity to book a guided bike tour through the city centre afterwards.

“Enjoy Rotterdam!”

Our friendly guides know all the hot spots and will share everything that’s happening in town. You will discover all of Rotterdam in a very Dutch way, by bike! The guide will share personal stories as well as remarkable facts & figures and show you all places of interest in Rotterdam. This is THE best way to discover and experience Rotterdam. The bike tour is including:
- Cheers! During the tour you will be offered a glass of Rotterdamsche Port to toast on ‘our Rotterdam’!

- I scream! You will make a stop at our favourite ice-cream, parlour and pick a ball of your favourite ice-cream. Fun and tasty
- City Poem. A talented Rotterdam poet / writer will surprise you on a special location with a tribute to Rotterdam.

Rotterdam guided boat tour (August 24 16:00 – 18:00 hrs)
On Saturday the conference will be followed by cocktails. Afterwards you may want to discover Rotterdam by boat.

Boat trip Rottemeren: Your captain and guide will welcome you on board. While the skipper sails you on the Kralingse Plas and you will enjoy the beautiful city skyline and a view on the EC Boulevard. The boat tour continues on the Rotte towards the Rottemeren, a beautiful recreational area alongside of the river where Rotterdam is named after. During the tour the captain will share lots of interesting anecdotes about Rotterdam. (There is availability for up to 35 people)

For more information over the program you may contact:
Tickets for the EC competitions are available at the ticket pages.

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