MEET THE TEAM
Annabel Showers – Equine Assisted Therapy
Annabel is a passionate animal lover, mum of 2 beautiful children and a registered Counsellor and Equine Assisted Psychotherapist. Having horses from a young age, Annabel quickly became aware of how healing horses can be. Annabel’s key areas of interest are building self-esteem, increasing awareness, regulation techniques, relationship building, anxiety and boundary setting.
Annabel’s mission is to provide an honest, practical and healing approach to everyday life and mental health issues such a PTSD, trauma, social anxiety, confidence issues, OCD and suicide prevention to name a few. Annabel works with children, teens, and adults both privately and NDIS clients. Sessions can be offered individually or in small groups (both private and corporate groups can be catered for).
Yonina Smith – Equine Assisted Therapy
Nina Smith is a registered Counsellor with the Australian Counselling Association and the Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia. Her interest is in working with children and supporting their parent in parenting. She trained in Equine Assisted Psychotherapy through the Equine Psychotherapy Institute. She has had the pleasure and honour to have spent the majority of my career supporting Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander children and families. This has enabled her to work in various remote and urban locations across Australia. She has a passion for Equine Assisted Psychotherapy.
Fam Charko – Equine Assisted Learning
Fam is a qualified Equine & Nature Assisted Learning practitioner and certified with the Equine Psychotherapy Institute in 2019. A trained ecologist (MSc), shamanic practitioner and in a life-long relationship with horses, Fam understands the interconnection between all living things on an intellectual as well as a deeply somatic level.
She collaborates with her horse-colleagues to help people uncover more of their authentic self, which in turn inspires them to make better choices in their lives. Fam believes everything affects everything, and therefore making healthier choices has positive effects not just on ourselves, but on the people and the world around us as well.
She works with a wide variety of clients, including those with mental health challenges, neurodivergence, LGBTIQA+, disadvantaged backgrounds and trauma survivors. She works in a culturally sensitive, inclusive, trauma-informed way and is currently studying a Diploma of Counselling.
Work with Fam on: building self-esteem and confidence, awareness of self and others, emotional literacy and development, emotional regulation, communicating boundaries, leadership development, group/corporate management training, self-development and personal growth, connecting with nature and other learning goals.
Tee O’Neill – Equine Assisted Learning
For the last six years Tee has been facilitating EAL sessions with a variety of clients including adolescents, veterans, NDIS recipients, asylum seekers and young people in out of home care. Tee, along with the herd of horses, offers group programs that support people to reconnect with their deeper nature and their inner calm to nurture their creative power and wellbeing.
She is also an accomplished playwright with a PhD in creative writing. Tee particularly loves combining her two passions of EAL and creativity by running group retreats. Popular weekend retreats include Creativity with Horses and Writing with Horses.
Rachel Hatherley – Equine Assisted Learning
Rachel works with both NDIS clients, adults, young people and anyone curious about horses. Rachel aims to create a supportive, informative and inclusive environment for experiential and relational learning. Rachel is passionate about supporting bonds between young people and their guardians through the promotion of clear communication and emotional intelligence modelled instinctually by the horses.
Alan Jager – Music Therapy and Office based psychotherapy.
(Dr) Alan Jager is a forensic psychiatrist of over twenty years experience.
Tee and Alan have been developing the 68-acre property known as “Piggery Hill” since 2013. Just one hour from Melbourne, it is a former piggery that backs onto the Yellingbo Conservation Area, home of Victoria’s emblems, the Leadbeater Possum and Helmeted Honeyeater. They fell in love with its scenic beauty and wildlife and the potential of the industrial buildings.Together, they have transformed a former factory farm into an equine centre with horse-safe post and rail fencing, an arena, round yard and stables. In short, a haven for humans and horses.
Melbourne Equine Therapy on Piggery Hill is a special place, waiting for you to visit.