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Equine Research Foundation Charity Profile
The Equine Research Foundation is a nonprofit public charity described by section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Service. It is not a private foundation, as it is a nonprofit organization described in sections 509(a)(1) and 170(b)(1)(A)(vi) of the Internal Revenue Code. It is run by a Board of five Directors.
The purpose of the Foundation is to further scientific and public knowledge about equine learning abilities, perception, behavior, training, care and welfare and, thereby, improve human-horse interactions. All studies are noninvasive and rely on positive reinforcement.
The public can participate in equestrian vacations, internships, volunteering, and horse research through Foundation programs that qualify for a charity tax deduction.
The Equine Research Foundation supports research aimed at gaining a deeper understanding of the learning, cognitive and perceptual capabilities of horses. The study of cognition is concerned with the mental processes, representations and skills involved in thinking and learning. Researchers at the Equine Research Foundation are finding that horses have more advanced cognitive abilities than was previously thought and can solve complex problems. These studies show that horses are thinking creatures that respond best to humans who acknowledge their minds and emotions. General and scientific horse articles are available to those interested in learning more about horses and why horses behave as they do.
Equine Research Foundation Volunteer Information
Horse vacations, internships, and volunteering are the essence of the Equine Research Foundation's public programs. These are aimed at gaining a deeper understanding of horse learning capabilities, cognition, perception, and behavior as well as the human/horse relationship. See Schedules for dates and Accommodations for information on where participants live during they stay.
Programs offered fall into these categories:
Come get away from your everyday life and immerse yourself in a truly unique holiday experience. One of our perfect riding and learning horse vacations is waiting for you in the serene countryside of the California coast. Stay at the participant ranch house in the midst of a vineyard for one or two weeks, learn how to develop strong relationships with horses on the ground and in the saddle, improve your horsemanship skills, experience the ERF's training methods based on horse behavior and positive reinforcement, enjoy horseback riding, and find out more about horses through hands-on research activities. Discover what you won't find anywhere else: an adventure you'll help write, not one you'd just read about! (...more below)
Join the Foundation's team for a month or two or three and participate in equine research and learn about training and handling in a relaxed and friendly vacation-like atmosphere. Summer internships begin the first of the month or by special arrangement. School credit may be arranged. Please contact us to work out details. (...more below)
Working Vacation - Be the ERF Cook or Wrangler
In exchange for preparing meals, the ERF cook will have the opportunity to learn about and practice the ERF's approach to horsemanship, participate in research, and ride as well. Our cook may also assist with horse handling jobs, if interested. Please see our Employment page or contact us for more details. (...more below)
Year-round volunteer positions are available, mostly for local college students, but "students" of horses from the community are also welcome. Volunteers should be able to commit to regular schedules for a minimum of three months, approximately eight hours per week for volunteering and 16 hours per week for internships. School credits are available. Please contact us for more information. (...more below)
For activities overview, scroll down the page or click to:
Working With The Experts
Learning Eclectic Horsemansip
Doing Actual Research
Discovering New Friendships
Working With The Experts
Riding and learning horse vacations, internships, and volunteer programs involve learning from and working side-by-side with the co-founders of the Equine Research Foundation, equine cognition and behavior researcher and horse trainer, Dr. Evelyn B. Hanggi, and horse trainer and instructor, Jerry Ingersoll - exploring how horses think and learn, and using this knowledge for training, handling, riding, horsemanship, problem solving, and helping improve equine care and welfare.
Equine Research Foundation Donation Information
In general, contributions of cash, securities and property donated by U.S. citizens to support scientific research projects qualify for a charity tax deduction. Furthermore, under certain circumstances volunteers may deduct reasonable out-of-pocket expenses for transportation to and from research sites. Since tax circumstances for individuals vary, the Equine Research Foundation cannot be responsible for tax advice to its participants and sponsors. We suggest that you consult your own tax advisor.