About

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We are small but mighty! We were born in 2017, the culmination of hard work and a big dream by our founder Danielle McKinnon. We are backed by an experienced board of 8 colleagues who are specialists across a range of industries such as project management and compliance, have 11 staff members, around 80 volunteers and 150 regular ridden and non-ridden members who are all part of our ESR family.

We serve our community and address social needs through affordable equine and countryside interactions. Working collaboratively, with a range of partners and supported by a team of volunteers, we design and deliver activities that inspire people to develop, grow and reach their full potential.

Our values

Our values underpin the work of Eat Sleep Ride and they help us to ensure we provide the best possible outcome for all who engage with us:

Respect
Respect

we accept people for who they are, regardless of difference.

Education
Education

we see education as key to improving society and building better futures for us all.

Inspire
Inspire

inspiration motivates us all and awakens us to new opportunities.

Nurture
Nurture

we help, encourage and care for those we engage with.

Safety
Safety

self-care and care for others is paramount to us.

ESR was born from small beginnings, from the personal experiences of founding director Danielle, who as a young woman experienced first-hand the social issues young people and children face. Danielle came to horse riding as a child who dreamed of riding horses, like many of the children ESR help each day. She achieved her dream through hard work, determination and commitment.

Danielle also successfully ran her own freelance business, rehabilitating and training young horses, with help from The Prince’s Trust before setting up ESR, and this has been crucial to her understanding of the equine market, and to her building the foundations of running a small business. The knowledge gained along the way demonstrated the healing value of a deep relationship with horses. From this journey ESR evolved as a conduit to help people achieve their dreams.

ESR believe that equestrianism should be an inclusive, welcoming, and enjoyable activity, not only accessible to those who can afford it, but breaking down the elitist stigma that follows the sport. Through belief in our values we have created an environment where horse welfare sets the standard and theme throughout the yard.

Since the beginning ESR have held many events, both in-house and at different locations across the Borders and East Lothian, with hundreds of individuals participating in our activities and benefiting from our support.

Our motivation and drive comes from the lived experiences of the founding member, staff and volunteer team. We are passionate about enabling positive behaviour changes and raising aspirations. Our 5 strategic outcomes for achieving social and environmental change

1. People have improved physical & mental health and wellbeing with improved connection to their community.

2. People have developed strong coping strategies equipping them to live healthier, happier fulfilled lives with stronger relationships.

3. People have access to our life-enhancing therapeutic equine and countryside-based activities

4. Young people have improved employability skills and increased employment opportunities.

5. To reduce our impact on the environment by working towards achieving a net zero facility and sharing our learning

To support our children and young people, we have developed a theory of change model which will support us in delivering against these outcomes and ensure that we continue to create the positive social impact that is so important to us.

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