This fall, Epsilon employees in Massachusetts joined together to rake and clean up leaves at Ironstone Farm, an Andover, MA based horse farm and non-profit dedicated to equine-assisted therapeutic programs. The goal of the event was to help clear the trails used for walks with the horses, an essential part of the program’s therapeutic and healing process.
There is a unique group within Epsilon that supports taking a pause for valuable activities and stands out for its exceptional approach to promoting unity, collaboration, and success. This group is known as Epic: a community that showcases the power of uniting and uplifting those in our communities.
Epic places an emphasis on three key pillars - social, outreach and wellness. Within these pillars, employees are encouraged to step away from their screens and connect with one another in person. Epic Leads in offices around the globe are given the opportunity to host activities that correspond to their colleagues’ interests and that support their local communities.
Why Ironstone Farm?
For 40 years, Challenge Unlimited at Ironstone farm has served individuals of various backgrounds, uniting them with horses in programs that have shown a transformative impact. It was clear that the staff and volunteers love their horses and appreciate the work they do every day, cultivating a safe space for healing and peace. In fact, 75-100 volunteers come to the farm weekly to contribute to Ironstone’s mission.
After the executive director gave a walkthrough of the farm, it was obvious that the equine-assisted programs are a powerful tool for transforming lives. Through horseback riding, individuals with physical challenges can develop greater strength and mobility. Children who were previously unable to speak, including those on the autism spectrum, have found their voices with the aid of equine therapy. The human-horse connection is a potent catalyst for cultivating trust, hope and confidence in clients as they learn to realize their full potential.
In addition to these programs, Ironstone’s other existing therapeutic programs have been life-changing for clients. These include programs for veterans and first responders with PTSD, individuals impacted by cancer, seniors with dementia, and people recovering from addiction. These therapeutic programs are a powerful tool for providing hope and healing to those who need it most.
As the Epsilon volunteers were raking and cleaning up the trails, occasional neighing could be heard from the horses, which signified that they are happy and well cared for. The volunteers also enjoyed learning about the horses’ intelligence, including how the animals can read human body language and emotions from one’s intent and tone and respond in their own non-verbal communication.
The big picture
This collaborative effort was a fulfilling experience that shows the value of firsthand community work and how it positively impacts everyone involved. At the core of Ironstone’s work is our own Epsilon culture, as it emphasizes the value of collaboration by prioritizing "Work Together to Win Together." Through their hands-on work, the volunteers demonstrate the power of our culture by coming together to make a tangible difference in their local communities.
Thank you to Skye Lovell, the Epic Wakefield Committee, and Ironstone Farm for coordinating this event. For more information on Ironstone Farm and their programs, visit https://ironstonefarm.org/