«I could not think of any better way to honour Ann than together with her family to establish a Foundation to carry on the work she had started and build up the evidence of the therapeutic value of horse-assisted therapy.»

– Tore Godal, founder of Ann Kern-Godal’s memorial fund


Horse-Assisted Therapy

Ann Kern-Godal’s memorial fund for Horse-Assisted Therapy promotes evidence-based research into horse-assisted therapy (HAT) for different patient groups.

«Horse assisted therapy (HAT) is an innovative psychotherapy that actively involves horses in the therapeutic process. It is provided as a health-related treatment with claimed benefits for physical and psychological health, including substance abuse disorder (SUD).»

– excerpt from Ann Kern-Godal’s ph.d-thesis


Since horse-assisted therapy is an emerging field of research, the areas the fund supports are relatively open-ended and include at least three categories:

  • Stipend for a PhD candidate’s research into HAT, where their thesis focuses wholly or partially on HAT.
  • Stipend for a postdoctoral position dedicated wholly or partially to HAT. Exploration of new methodological procedures is considered particularly valuable.
  • Prize given to the best institution with regard to promoting HAT research.

Especially promising research projects may receive support for up to 3 years.


Grantees 2020

The fund accepts applications from international candidates, and we have reviewed project descriptions from Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, France, Italy and Spain. The academics reviewing the applications report that the level of competition and quality has been impressive and very high. The large majority of the applications have been deemed qualified and it has been a difficult job to divide the limited available funds (NOK 450 000). 

UNIFOR is pleased to announce that the following three candidates are the Ann Kern-Godal’s memorial fund for Horse-Assisted Therapy grantees of 2020. 

Larissa Bär
Affiliated institution: University of Constance (Germany) , Department of neuropsychology
Project title: Synchronization of Heart Rate Variability as Suggested Mechanism for the Effectiveness of Horse Assisted Therapy: A Systematic Investigation
Granted amount: NOK 169 262

Francesca Gatti
Affiliated institution: Stiftelsen MiMer / MiMer’s Trust (Sweden)
Project title: Equine Assisted Mindfulness for Cancer Rehabilitation: a pilot study
Granted amount: NOK 158 078

Georgina Silvia Dieste Pérez
Affiliated institution: AINISE International Alliance for Healthy Interaction with Equines (Spain)
Project title: Clinical trial and data collection, multicenter, randomized trial, with experimental group, control group, and blind evaluation by third parties, in order to determine the effect of Therapeutic riding, on a group of people with Arthritis
Granted amount: NOK 122 660


Call for applications 2021

Ann Kern-Godal’s memorial fund for horse-assisted therapy will announce a new call for applications 15 January 2021. The application deadline is 15 February 2021. Click here to be transferred to the fund’s website. 


Ann’s thoughs on horse-assisted therapy:

Translate »