Warriors and Horses
ALATHEIA ANNOUNCES NEW “WARRIORS & HORSES” VETERANS PROGRAM
June 17, 2019
Here at Alatheia Therapeutic Riding Center we are pleased to announce that last winter, our recent 6-week pilot program serving combat veterans, “Warriors & Horses”, was a huge success. Funded by the NCW Vets Serving Vets, this program focuses on treating combat-related symptoms, including Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Veterans completed standardized assessments before and after the pilot program to measure outcomes. These included the PTSD Symptom Scale and the Generalized Anxiety Disorder 7-Item Scale and both showed significant improvement in just six weeks as measured by these assessments. According to the After Action Report submitted by the therapeutic team, one participant showed four times the benefit as compared to his six weeks of traditional office therapy! This rate of improvement has become a hallmark for equine assisted therapy programs serving veterans, and has resulted in the US House of Representatives including it as a category for funding under the Veterans Affairs Adaptive Sports Grant Program.
Assessments and government support aside, it’s the feedback from participants that captures the importance of Warriors & Horses most effectively:
“Thank you for hosting the veteran’s program at Alatheia. Because of my time there I have found a place of peace and understanding, even if it is for a few hours a week and have made breakthroughs in my peace of mind… There are no words that can do justice to what this program has meant to me and how much it helped. The value of your contributions to Alatheia is immeasurable. Keep on keepin’ on. You are going to save lives with a program like this.”
This is powerful sentiment in light of government claims that 22 veterans commit suicide every day in the US!
Due to initial success and the desire to meet the urgent need of veterans, the Alatheia Board has committed to continuing Warriors & Horses through the end of 2019. Additionally, with the future expansion of Alatheia and its relocation to a new site, the board has identified three areas for supporting veterans in their long term plan: volunteerism, therapeutic and adaptive riding, and mental health therapy.
Alatheia’s Executive Director and Founder, Nancy Grette says “We are so grateful to our local community for supporting the important programs that make a difference in the lives of veterans and people with special needs. This new program shows such promise for improving the lives of our service men and women!”
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