MRT News

Our future as a centre of excellence

Muirfield Riding Therapy has a tradition of breaking new ground with the establishment of our partnership with NHS Lothian in 2009, The Children’s Therapeutic Riding Service, to deliver therapy sessions for patients in the NHS Lothian paediatric physiotherapy department.

In order to continue offering a high-quality service to the children and adults who apply to MRT, the charity is supporting two of its volunteers, Occupational Therapist, Morven McLelland and physiotherapist Ishbel Benzie, to undertake a post graduate course of study in Equine Facilitated Therapy.

Both are already experienced in their own fields as well as being horse riders in their free time. The course of study will see them expand and develop their professional knowledge alongside equine facilitated learning.

Morven has been a volunteer at MRT for 10 years and Ishbel Benzie, for around 8 months. What this investment in their training means to our participants is that in the short term, we can continue to offer a high-quality service to the children and adults who apply to MRT.

Morven said,

After 10 years of volunteering for MRT I am finally embarking on a bit of a ‘dream’ ! My huge thanks to MRT in supporting this training. This will be the first Occupational Therapist trained in Equine Facilitated Therapy volunteering for MRT and I hope to bring a different set of skills whilst at the same time complementing those of our current and new Physiotherapists. I’m glad to have therapy pony Johnny to practice on in my spare time.

And physiotherapist, Ishbel said,

I’m so excited for this opportunity to further my training with MRT and look forward to bringing back new ideas and developing new services with this dynamic charity

MRT doesn’t charge its participants, and has always offered a great holistic service to participants and their families. As Morven and Ishbel progress through their course, it means that we can consider more children and adults with complex needs, and as Susan Law, our Services Coordinator, explains,

By supporting Morven and Ishbel in their learning we will be able to further develop the range of service we offer to people with disability. At the same time their training will enhance the existing activities of the group. Thanks to the support of the community it serves, MRT has been able to build amazing facilities and by investing in the training of our staff, the future of MRT as a centre of excellence is looking rosy!

(Photos: Morven, on the right, looking at therapy pony Johnny, Ishbel on the left with trees behind)