Healing Power of Horses

We have joined forces with the Chopra Foundation and Never Alone to spotlight the Healing Power of Horses – supporting the next generation’s mental health, inspired by our Winter 2023 campaign. The interconnected initiative includes the world’s most extensive equine-assisted therapy directory, a dedicated educational platform and stories of real people who have been healed by these incredible creatures. The campaign will raise funds for The Chopra Foundation and equine therapy centres.

Since as early as I can remember, I’ve felt incredibly safe with horses – whether riding as a child in Scotland with my family or on my own today. The connections I’ve made with these creatures have been among the most important of my entire life. As with all of us, there have been times when I have felt down, alone, stressed or afraid. Being on my horse always offers a moment of pause, calm and reflection – allowing me to put things into perspective. So often, I just need to be with my horse… Breathing together and feeling so connected. When I met Deepak Chopra and learned about his work with Never Alone, I knew we had to collaborate and tell the story of the healing power of horses. Exploring how equine therapy can support mental health and so much more, particularly for the next generation – who are truly suffering right now. It has been a gift to have learned an incredible amount through this process. Here at Stella, we always want to say and do more with fashion. We began by celebrating horses in our Winter 2023 collection, which evolved into how they can heal and help people, and continues with supporting Never Alone and equine therapy centres everywhere. This has been one of the most meaningful and exciting pieces of work we’ve done and I hope the healing power of horses can help others as it has me, time after time

x Stella

The campaign also includes a bespoke guided meditation and a limited-edition iconic Falabella bag featuring a custom ribbon with writing by American poet Cleo Wade – available exclusively at stellamccartney.com and select Stella McCartney boutiques, with only 96 created globally from deadstock styles to minimise waste. Named after one of Stella’s favourite breeds of horses, the black tote is handcrafted in Italy from vegan materials.

Operation Centaur, an equine therapy centre in Richmond Park, London, was a key partner for the campaign. Its founder Andreas Liefooghe says, “Therapy relies on language. Horses are expert communicators, yet they never rely on language. Everything happens with energy. When my patients connect to horses, they can reconnect with a disavowed part of themselves.”

Equine therapy can include the caring for, riding, training, observing and interacting with horses to support a variety of mental health conditions from alcoholism and addiction to depression and disordered eating. Studies have indicated its effectiveness across age groups; adolescents with depression and anxiety have shown a 60% improvement in symptoms after a 12-week programme, while 80% of veterans with PTSD reported a significant reduction in symptoms. Interacting with horses creates a non-judgmental environment for self-expression and has been shown to reduce anxiety, lower blood pressure and decrease stress, whilst improving interpersonal skills, enhancing self-esteem and confidence, and increasing mindfulness and presence.

The collaboration is rooted in a chance connection between Stella met Deepak Chopra last year, where she was immediately inspired to get involved with The Chopra Foundation and the work it is doing to support adolescent mental health.

Equine therapy is a powerful therapeutic modality that works through limbic resonance, epigenetic modulation, and neuroplasticity to change the neural landscape of the brain for self-regulation, homeostasis, and healing. I am looking forward to building a long-term partnership with Stella McCartney and her team to transform wellbeing.

Deepak Chopra

Healing Power of Horses is guided by Stella’s lifelong love of horses and her observations as a mother, having seen first-hand the impact of the pandemic, technology and current events on the next generation. The number of young people living with depression doubled between 2011 and 2021, with 52.5% of the 17-23 year old reporting their mental health had declined since COVID-19. From her childhood in Scotland through to now, Stella has turned to horses as a source of healing, which is increasingly supported by scientific research.

Discover more at healingpowerofhorse.com and shop the limited-edition Falabella below.

Pre-order now