In 2016, after having the opportunity to have horses back in his life, Simon d’Unienville made a decision to pursue becoming a Monty Roberts Instructor and work with horses full time.
We use psychology and Equus, the horses' natural communication system, to build a willing, trusting partnership with the horse, allowing us to work through any remedial issues.
© 2019 by Marrier d’Unienville New window.
Determined to be the fastest qualifying instructor, Simon was certified in August 2018 and has dedicated his new career to making a difference in the lives of people through the healing power of horses.
For over 20 years Monty Roberts and the team of Certified Instructors have been working to spread his non-violent horsemanship techniques through his International Learning Center in Solvang, California and his instructors’ programs in many countries around the world.
When Monty Roberts began looking for his next resident instructor, the efforts went on for more than a year to obtain a coveted work visa from South Africa. And then Covid 19 created traveling restrictions for months. Persevering Monty’s team finally welcomed Simon and his wife Yvette to the Monty Roberts International Learning Center in September.
“Many people call it horse whispering or ‘natural horsemanship’ but we don’t use the term,” said d’Unienville. "As Mr Roberts says, ‘what’s natural about saddling and riding a horse?’ so we rather say non-violent horsemanship or gentle, effective horsemanship.
We use an understanding of psychology and Equus, the horses’ natural communication system, to build a willing, trusting partnership with the horse – allowing us to work through any remedial issues they may have.”
Simon is one of 14 Lead-Up® Instructors world-wide which is a Monty Roberts program that’s been scientifically proven to reduce violence in vulnerable youths. "It’s wonderful to give back and help make a difference in the lives of these kids, while introducing them to horses at the same time. I’m committed to reducing violence against both horses and humans,” d’Unienville added.
Monty Roberts was summoned in 1989 by Queen Elizabeth II to demonstrate his renowned techniques with horses. The Queen put him on the road to share his knowledge ever since. With the recent rise in equine-assisted programs the world-over, many more non-equestrians are being introduced to the amazing benefits of time spent with horses.
“I have dedicated my life to the study of horses and their interactions with humans, and after more than 80 years of working with horses I’m still learning! I often say to my students ‘My way is the only way for me today, but if you show me a better way, that will be my way tomorrow.’ My techniques have morphed in such a way so as to improve right up to this very day. And I encourage my students to do the same,” said Monty Roberts.
“Our instructor base keeps growing and now includes Certified Instructors on all 6 populated continents, with [Monty Roberts] courses in over 30 countries,” said Debbie Loucks, Roberts’ daughter and Legacy and Program Manager. “Our instructors are doing some amazing work all over the world, for horses, and people too.”
Eight of my instructors have recently been recognized by Her Majesty for their extraordinary efforts and innovation in using my concepts to positively affect the lives of groups of individuals through the healing power of horses,” said Roberts. “We are at a pivotal point where, I believe, the world is ready to accept and embrace the value of therapeutic initiatives with horses, and these young mentors are setting a platform for further expansion of my concepts into the next decade.”
In addition to the courses taught at the Monty Roberts International Learning Center, d’Unienville will be responsible for a new program this year with The Right Horse Adoption Partner for horses being trained by Monty and his team to cause them to be more adoptable. The Right Horse Initiative is now a program of the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) while simultaneously providing students with a unique opportunity to master the Monty Roberts training methods. The horses’ individual needs/training level will be matched with the training level of the course and students. Along the way, horses will be promoted for adoption to find their right homes.
Press release provided by Debbie Loucks