Country Treks Academy is based in a small village in South Shropshire, nestled on a beautiful 30 acres site complete with a large 30×80 arena, training facilities, accommodation and a team of fully qualified coaches and superb horses. Country Treks Academy has been designed to fill the obvious gap in the delivery and accessibility of equine studies for vulnerable or additional needs learners . We decided that Ginny Hole was a very special place absolutely perfect to deliver bespoke training / mentoring . It’s a peaceful nature reserve with a lake and woodland which offer tranquillity and a sense of well being . We won the prestigious national SEIB Small Riding School of the Year Award and in addition to that the BHS Changing Lives Through Horses Centre Award. We are now recognised as the best nurturing safe learning provision for young people with additional needs , be it behaviour learning physical or emotional .
Steph is a BHS qualified Centre Manager ( level 5 ) and a BHS Accredited Professional Coach. She is also a NVQ trainer and assessor with a 25 plus years experience working with vulnerable and challenging young people with additional needs. Her pupils have gone into win national awards for their success stories starting with Changing Lives Through Horses . Steph has also presented case studies to forums and been involved in a number of pilot studies for the BHS . Having been brought up around horses and ridden all her life she quickly equated the benefits of horses, their unique attraction and their ability to calm and engage young people.
For the last 30 years, Steph has won awards, developed programmes and been instrumental in pilot courses and most importantly working directly with young people in crisis. She has met Princess Anne, talked to packed venues about her experiences and also featured on BBC Radio 4 Womens Hour. She really does care about each and every participant and is passionate about employing a superb team of staff who show flair and empathy as well as all the correct qualifications.
We want to inspire disengaged young individuals to reconnect with society through working with horses and within the outdoors. Our vision is to take small groups of learners , the ones that currently struggle to access mainstream provisions. These young people need to be treated as individuals with empathy patience and creative coaching . We have been delivering this sort of education for 25 years to young people in care / excluded from school etc with great success but struggle to source funding for the most vulnerable .
Our courses are perfect for young people who do not quite fit into mainstream school or college. For the younger students we are hoping to increase resilience and get them back into mainstream school, but for the older students we can offer an ideal stepping stone into preparation for adulthood.
Each day the young learners will be coached by experienced staff. The timings are 10.00am – 2.00pm, and throughout these times the learners will be fully supervised. Riding is not essential, but in our experience learning to ride a horse is always a significant draw. The course will also involve every aspect of horse care and stable management. Each learner will be treated to a bespoke programme which fits their individual needs and ways of learning. This means we can cater for a wide variety of learning difficulties. The unique setting and tranquil environment of Country Treks often has a huge impact on the young people we work with. Each student will be required to do a taster day where we can assess the appropriate level of qualification they can study and gainfully achieve.