About Us

Donna O’Connell

Donna is married with three grown children and several grandchildren. Donna is a retired police officer, who was employed with the RCMP for 32 years. She worked on the Joint Forces Penitentiary Squad for 6 years with the OPP, Kingston Police Service and Correctional Services of Canada. With a love for animals, Donna and family bought a horse farm in Enterprise and named it Charmed Stables. Together, Donna and her daughter Katie McKay have developed Charmed Horse Assisted Wellness Centre located at Charmed Stables. Donna has received her training through EAGALA and is a certified Equine Specialist. Coming from a policing background, Donna’s passion is to help first responders suffering with PTSD, as well as others who would benefit from healing or team building through horses.

Katie McKay

Katie is a co-owner of Charmed Horse Assisted Wellness Centre. She has received her training and certification as an Equine Specialist through EAGALA. Her love of horses began when she was enrolled in a local riding camp at age 9. In 2010, Katie’s parents established Charmed Stables, a horse boarding facility. Over the years, she has helped them manage and grow the stable business. In her years spent with horses, she has experienced and seen the bond that they can form with people, which is truly amazing. They get to know you on a deep and personal level, and can tell when you are having a bad day or are anxious. Knowing the power of this bond, Katie has seen how horses can change and heal us.

Anita Brown

I am a Registered Psychotherapist and Certified Hypnotherapist providing short and long-term counselling/therapy services for children, youth and adults; specializing in child, youth and adult mental health and adult hypnosis.  I operate a Private Practice in Belleville, ON and will be providing Equine Assisted Psychotherapy at Charmed Horse Assisted Wellness Centre 1-2 days/week.  I have provided psychotherapy/mental health services to children, youth and adults for over 17 years and am so pleased to be able to join the Equine Therapy team at Charmed Horse Assisted Wellness Centre.  I became familiar with Equine Therapy a few years ago and instantly felt how unique and impactful it was for me and how it can help people understand and deal with difficult issues in one’s life using metaphors and hands-on experiences!

Dr Marjorie Swarthout C. Psych.

For nearly twenty years I have had the privilege of accompanying people who seek to regain wholeness and meaning in their lives as they work to overcome the difficulties which weigh them down. These include mental health concerns such as depression, anxiety, and low self-esteem, relationship issues, and work stress. Due to the high incidence of trauma encountered among clients in my professional practice, I received specialized training in PTSD with a focus on childhood abuse.  In addition, I have extensive training in grief and loss assisting people as they try to find meaning and purpose amidst loss.

My international training as a psychologist and multifaith spiritual health professional, have given me expertise in offering culturally sensitive psychotherapy.  I have worked with people of all ages, races, and cultures, from many walks of life including civilians and military, the chronically ill and those with a single episode illness.  Given the client-centred focus of my practice great importance is placed on building a strong therapeutic relationship, and tailoring therapy to meet client’ specific therapeutic goals.

I’ve been privileged to work in a variety of clinical settings.  These include, an equine assisted psychotherapy centre, the Canadian Forces Reserves and Integrated Personnel Support Services, in-patient acute care, a mood disorders clinic, ambulatory outpatient mental health services, community mental health and addiction services, a detoxification centre, refugee psychosocial services for survivors of torture, adolescent and university counselling services, as well as  primary care psychological services, and neuropsychological services.  I have also been a university guest lecturer and conference presenter exploring issues of spirituality in mental health.

I am a member of the College of Psychologists of Ontario, a diplomat with the Academy of Cognitive Therapists, and a certified spiritual health specialist with the Canadian Association of Spiritual Care.  I am also a member of the Canadian Psychological Association, the American Psychological Association and the British Psychological Society.  I received my doctorate in counselling psychology from, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland, a postgraduate certificate in CBT for psychological trauma from the University of Oxford, Oxford, UK, a postgraduate diploma in Health Sciences: Cognitive Behavioural Therapy in Existential Practice from the New School of Psychotherapy and Counselling, Middlesex University, Middlesex, UK, a Master of Education in Counselling and Human Development from St Lawrence University, Canton, NY, a Master’s of Theological Studies from Trinity College, the University of Toronto and a postgraduate diploma in Christian Studies and Inner-city Ministry.