Meet The Team
Hi, I’m Jana
Hi, I am the Yard Manager here at The Hugs Foundation. This role utilises the skills I have gained over the years working within the equine industry in the UK and abroad. I have a degree in Animal Science, Behaviour and Welfare. I enjoy anaylsing the horses reactions and ‘problems’ to really understand the why they are exhibiting different behaviours. The wild horses and ‘worriers’ are my favourite to work with. It is just fascinating to see their transformation after their rehabilitation here at Hugs.
I have personally competed my own horses with my favourite discipline being cross country.
Hugs is amazing as not only do we help these abandoned and unwanted horses, we also open our doors to volunteers and work experience students. This ensures that we can help educate others about the difficulties horses in the U.K can face.
Hi, I’m Hannah
Assistant Yard Manager
I am the Assistant Yard Manager at Hug. I have grown up with horses all my life. I currently own two horses which I compete regularly. I am also currently fostering a Hugs rescue named Herbie, who is very playful and mischievous! I am studying my BHS Challenge Awards alongside work. This gives me additional knowledge and skills to bring to Hugs.
I enjoy the challenge of unhandled horses and watching their transformation to ‘well behaved’ rehomable horses.
Hi, I’m Charlie
Animal Welfare Assistant
I’m so excited to be working here at Hugs. Before coming here I worked as a horse trainer, focusing primarily on using positive reinforcement and clicker training to gain the horses’ confidence, teach them new skills and work through a variety of behavioural issues. I also have a BSc Hons degree in Equine Science where I focused primarily on behaviour, welfare and ethics within the equine industry.
I have three horses of my own currently. They are all totally different and I love working with them and trying new things. I dabble in lots of things with them, from low level competing to groundwork and even trick training. I am really looking forward to bringing my skills to the horses here at Hugs, seeing their personalities develop and go off to their new homes.
Hi, I’m Laura
I’m the Fundraising Manager here at Hugs. My role is varied and includes fundraising, project managing our veterans well-being project, administration and office duties PLUS helping out the equine and well-being teams. I am very excited to be working with such an amazing team and charity. I have an FdSc in Animal Behaviour and Psychology and a BA (Hons) in Human Behavioural Studies, specialising in mental health and well-being. I am working towards becoming an expert in both animal and human behaviour to work with both to improve mental well-being and give a sense of purpose and happiness back into their lives, with a focus on military veterans.
I am extremely driven and passionate and am very outgoing, friendly and caring. I have ridden most of my life but I like to be a bit different so I ride western style, like a cowgirl! I have studied a number of different horsemanship methods including Tom Dorrance, Buck Brannaman, Pat Parelli and Monty Roberts and have learnt to use a combination of approaches to train my horses. I find it really useful to have lots of tools in the bag so if a horse doesn’t understand what I’m asking, I can try a different way.
I am also passionate about equine-assisted therapy and have trained in the Eagala method. Coming into the office every morning and being greeted by the dogs, the office cats and all the other animals is always a great way to start the day. Hugs, is such an amazing place, helping both animals and people and I can’t wait to see what the future brings for the team here.
Hi, I’m Hazel
Youth Well-Being Manager
I am excited to be the Youth Well-Being Manager here at Hugs. I have years of experience in different roles in the childcare/education sector, giving me a vast range of knowledge and skills in supporting a variety of children and young people and the problems they face. With the different experiences I have gained, I have found a real passion for all things outdoors, sports based and arty and I enjoy utilising these when working with children. I have led many alternative art and craft lessons, often bringing the outside in, and really appreciating what the Cornish countryside has to offer. I have helped to create different areas in other settings such as raised beds and even built a traditional roundhouse.
I also have a real passion for horses, having owned them all my life and am now living on a farm. I spend a lot of my time outside. I have found that animals of all shapes and sizes can be very exciting for children but they can also offer a calming and understanding experience for children and young people experiencing mental ill health.
I am really looking forward to bringing all of my passions together for the different projects that are ongoing here at Hugs and I look forward to making a difference to humans and animals alike.
Hi, I’m Megan
Youth Well-Being Support Worker
I am excited to be part of the team here at Hugs. I have 17 years of experience working in the mental health sector. Before coming to Hugs I worked as a Public Health nurse and am a Trauma Informed Practitioner.
I have been surrounded with animals all my life, including horses, dogs and cats. I have a passion for young people’s mental health and animal communication. Here at Hugs, I can combine my skills and passion in an environment that is both nurturing and healing for the young people that visit us and the animals themselves.