Benefits for Veterans

Envision Horses Deliver Hope for Veterans

Equine-assisted therapy helps soldiers deal with PTSD

| Posted 8 months ago

It’s not your typical therapist’s office. There’s no chaise lounge. No corporate art. No receptionist. But for a growing number of local soldiers suffering from the invisible wounds of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, a 20-acre farm north of Fayetteville has become a place of healing. Read More … 

Equine Assisted Therapy Helps Soldiers Deal with PTSD

Video Combat Veterans Describe Equine Assisted Therapy Benefits in Interviews
Equine Therapy with US Combat Veterans

Published on Apr 27, 2013 Equine Facilitated Mental Health Counseling with Combat Veterans. Ironstone Farm, Equine Facilitated Activities with Combat Veterans to improve psychological well-being. Equine Therapy is a proven treatment for PTSD, Depression, and Anxiety, and can help with self-esteem, trust, communication, and overall well-being. Veteran Equine retreat hosted by Ironstone Farm, Andover, MA. Program designed and facilitated by: Pam McPhee, MSW, Windhorse Leadership Services; Paul Smith, PhD, Centaur Leadership Services, Prescott College; and Dave Ferruolo Graduate Student, Department of Social Work University of New Hampshire. Andover, MA. In cooperation with the Browne Center, Centaur Leadership Services, and Mountain Lake Center. Equine Therapy is a proven treatment for PTSD, Depression, and Anxiety, and can help with self-esteem, trust, and communication issues.

Horses Help Veterans Heal Invisible Wounds

Published on Dec 4, 2014
Serving in combat can affect soldiers long after they return home from war. For some, the wounds are physical and visible. For others, they go deeper, affecting their mental health. Staff at Boulder Crest Retreat in Bluemont, VA, use horses—equine therapy—to help veterans heal these invisible wounds.
Read more about the retreat and equine therapy:

PRODUCER: Jason Kurtis
VIDEOGRAPHERS: Jason Kurtis, Ashleigh DeLuca, and Shannon Sanders
EDITOR: Nick Lunn
SPECIAL THANKS: Boulder Crest Retreat

Disabled women veterans find help through horses – Metro – The Boston Globe
By Brian MacQuarrie GLOBE STAFF OCTOBER 19, 2014
NORFOLK — Feet in the stirrups, hands on the reins, Karen Souza closes her eyes as a quarter horse
named Rio carries her to a tranquil, peaceful place she has rarely visited.
Souza spent decades walled off emotionally after being sexually abused as a teenage soldier. She never
formed a loving relationship, and she spoke only sparingly. But from that dark, bleak world, she has
emerged to find a place of trust, and accomplishment, and the simple joy of working with a large,
strong, patient animal. Read More …

After Devastating Injury, Iraq War Veteran Inspires Others Iraq war veteran Matthew Drake’s life changed the moment his vehicle was hit by a suicide bomber. He was a United States Army, Psychological Operations soldier, working on a tactical team when it happened. “It was high risk,” Drake says. “I knew darn well what I was getting into, but somebody has to do it.” The day was October 15, 2004. He was the only survivor among the five men in the vehicle. The gold cross he was carrying tucked inside his helmet- a graduation gift and a sign of his love for God – was left behind when his helmet was destroyed. But his faith has endured. Now he shares his story as a sought-after speaker and continues to serve others, only in a different way. He will receive an award for his dedicated service to his country and his ongoing devotion to encourage others on Nov. 15 at Michigan Abilities Center, an equine-assisted therapy center southwest of Ann Arbor, where he is currently undergoing hippotherapy.

Higher Ground:

Post-Traumatic Growth and Reduced PTSD for Veterans through Recreation

Outcomes of Adaptive Sports and Recreation Participation among Veterans Returning from Combat with Acquired Disability

Sierra Club:

Exploring the Benefits of Outdoor Experiences on Veterans

Other Resources: 

Examining Effects of Equine-Assisted Activities to Help Combat Veterans Improve Quality of Life

If a horse lets you pick its foot up off the ground, that’s a big deal. The action destabilizes the horse, so allowing someone to hold its foot means the horse believes the person means no harm.

At the Bergen Equestrian Center in Leonia, New Jersey, that sort of trust-building exercise isn’t just for the four-legged. A team of Columbia University researchers there is taking an unusual approach to treating Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, by having veterans spend time with horses.

As it turns out, these people and animals have some important commonalities. Read More…


Newsletter and Contact Us


Contact Envision