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Our Story

The mission of Equine Assisted Development of Grand Rapids began over 16 years ago with the vision of one woman, Deb VanderBand and her yearling horse, Cochise. After officially obtaining an LLC status in 2006 and later non-profit status, VanderBand continues with the same simple idea: connecting horses and people. Over the years, Equine Assisted Development has become an opportunity for people like you to help horses help people through the giving of time, expertise, and monetary support.

Equine Assisted Development is located at

3224 32nd Street in Grand Rapids, Michigan.


Our address is unique in that we are a farm of 26 acres in the middle of the city. Equine Assisted Development provides unique equine therapy experiences for a variety of people, groups, and ages. Every session is an on-ground (meaning - no riding), client-led, and interactive experience for personal growth and healing through a variety of non-riding activities. And because our sessions are grounded, no prior experience with horses is necessary to participate in any of our programs.


Sessions are facilitated by a certified equine specialist and mental health professional who process activities with participants. Through the use of metaphoric dialogue, observation, and open-ended questions, clients discover perceptions and mental processes behind their beliefs and actions. Horses are used to help people find their own solutions in a non-judgmental, emotionally safe place.


Equine therapy sessions take place in the barn, arena, or pasture depending on the needs of the client and nature of the activity. There is a place for everyone at Equine Assisted Development of Grand Rapids. We provide our services to people from all different backgrounds. Our goal is to be a place of healing, leaving each person with a sense of hope.


We want you to leave our farm different than you arrived.
We believe,
One Life Changed can Change a Community.

Faith Statement

As believers in Jesus Christ, and the Gospel, John 10:10 pushes us to the why of hope and how of science. We believe in Scripture, and the Holy Spirit. We are the hands and feet of Jesus, wishing to be a light people run to, as we point people to Jesus.

Real Happiness Begins in a Stable.


​Hope • Honesty • Respect • Integrity
Optimism • Perseverance • Dignity • Endurance