Suicide Prevention: Veterans Gain Resilience Through Equine-Assisted Therapy.

Veteran Suicide Prevention: Vets Grow Through Equine-Assisted Therapy.

 



Veteran Suicide Prevention Program
Veterans gain resilience through equine-assisted therapy.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado [March 27, 2018] - About 20 veterans a day die from suicide, according to a Veterans Affairs Department analysis released in 2016. Multiple programs have begun to provide the nation's veterans with the help they need.

One such program is based at the Pikes Peak Therapeutic Riding Center. The center provides services to veterans through the TRICARE insurance program, and it also helps veterans' families.

"We serve veterans, [and] we serve children with various diagnoses or needs," said Sarah Price, a mental health counselor for equine-assisted psychotherapy. "Some diagnoses include anxiety disorder. Some adults might have bipolar disorders or attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder. It really just depends. There are lots of different needs and symptoms that EAP can address and be beneficial for."

The riding center offers a certified Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International program to assist its clients.

"I have [post-traumatic stress disorder] and I have bipolar disorder," said Carolyn Burke, a Navy veteran. "For me, they've helped me through all of those, each one individually. And the social anxiety -- just dealing with people in general -- you can learn to do that here."

Understanding the Struggle

Experienced veteran staff members understand what their military and prior-military clients are going through.

"I was active duty Navy for six years," said Adam Morrison, an equine specialist in mental health and learning at the center. "I was in operations Desert Shield, Desert Storm and Desert Sweep. Now I'm a student with Arizona State, [going through] their social work program for my master's, and the population that I wanted to work with was veterans with PTSD, traumatic brain injury and the growing need for combat trauma. That, and I never have a bad day when I'm out around the horses, so I thought this would be a perfect mix."

Morrison tells potential clients who may be experiencing PTSD symptoms that this program is not your typical in-office therapy.

Therapy Teams

"We're able to create what I call a therapy team -- an equine specialist instructor, a therapist, the client and a horse -- and it has a lot of advantages," Morrison said. "I think it feels more free-flowing. There's not that rigid office setting. And the horse is highly reflective of the client's emotions and what they're feeling."

Amy May, a PATH-certified therapeutic riding instructor and equine specialist in mental health and learning, said she believes the program has affected local veterans most by giving them a chance just to be present with the horse.

"I've had quite a few of them tell me that this is the first time in years that they haven't been thinking about their anxiety or their experiences that are always kind of haunting them," May said. "So it's a moment for them to relax and to breathe and be with the horse -- sometimes challenged by the horse -- and really build that bond."

The program reaches a wide range of veterans: active duty, National Guard, reservists and retired military. The center has even started offering a free course to families, with a few requirements: the family must have TRICARE coverage, no more than four members can participate, and the youngest participant must be at least age 7.

Pikes Peak Therapeutic Riding Center staff member Amy May and therapeutic horse Bear work on training in a round pen on PPTRC grounds in Colorado Springs on Monday, Mar. 5th, 2018. Pikes Peak Therapeutic Riding Center staff member Amy May and therapeutic horse Bear work on training in a round pen on PPTRC grounds in Colorado Springs on Monday, Mar. 5th, 2018.

(Story by By Air Force Senior Airman Laura Turner, 310th Space Wing 9)



Posted 4/1/18

 

Scheduled Events

Click here for Summer Series Events: concerts, films, etc.!)
(Click above for summer series events, concerts, film, etc.)


  The Little Mermaid   (7/10 - 8/6)
  The Foreigner   (7/11-30)
  We Have Always Lived...   (7/12-21)
  Always... Patsy Cline   (7/14 - 8/30)
  The Bel Airs   (7/19)
  Family Discovery Walk   (7/19)
  Fugitive Pieces   (7/19)
  Pete Kilpatrick   (7/19)
  Beauty & the Beast   (7/19 - 8/4)
  Torme Sings Torme   (7/20)
  Tom Papa   (7/20)
  Day Out With Thomas   (7/20-22)
  Seek the Peak   (7/20 & 21)
  Loon Festival   (7/21)
  Studio Two   (7/21)
  Circus Smirkus   (7/21 & 22)
  Mountain Bike Megabowl  (7/21 & 22)
  Albannach   (7/22)
  Bob Amos...   (7/22)
  Benefit Golf Tournament   (7/22)
  UVCB,   (7/23)
  Chicago   (7/23 - 8/31)
  Chanticleer   (7/24)
  Detour   (7/24)
  Tim & Dave Show  [.pdf]  (7/24)
  Peter Lawlor   (7/25)
  Colonial Meetinghouses   (7/25)
  Griff O'Brien   (7/25)
  Annie & the Orphans   (7/26)
  Annual Fundraiser   (7/26)
  The Hunts   (7/26)
  Dearly Beloveds  (7/26-29)
  Ossipee Valley Music Fest  (7/26-29)
  Laughing Stock   (7/26 - 8/4)
  Sounds in the Sanctuary   (7/27)
  Dustbowl Revival   (7/28)
  Hebron Church Fair   (7/28)
  ADAAWE   (7/29)
  Back Shed String Band   (7/29)
  The Moonlighters,   (7/30)
  East Bay Jazz  [.pdf]  (7/31)
  The Dean Machine   (7/31)
  Our Town   (7/31 - 8/29)
  Barnyard Incident   (8/1)
  Ingrid Husemoller   (8/1)
  Hester Street   (8/2)
  Rob Curto's Forro For All   (8/2)
  August, Osage County   (8/2-18)
  Ranky Tanky   (8/3)
  SitS: Anderson Jazz Trio   (8/3)
  Jericho ATV Festival   (8/3,4)
  The Hairy Man  (8/3,4)
  Freedom Old Home Week   (8/3-12)
  Love's Labor's Lost   (8/3-12)
  Tales of Hoffmann   (8/3-12)
  Blueberry Fest  (8/4)
  Krisanthi Sings  (8/4)
  Tanglewood Marionettes   (8/4)
  Top Notch Triathlon   (8/4)
  August First   (8/5)
  Touch-a-Truck   (8/5)
  Barber of Seville   (8/5-14)
  Lyme Town Band,   (8/6)
  Railroad's 44th Birthday   (8/6)
  Jose Duddy & BBQ   (8/7)
  Mo' Combo  [.pdf]  (8/7)
  Back Shed String Band   (8/8)
  Matt O'Dell   (8/8)
  66th Annual Penny Sale   (8/9)
  Acoustic Radio   (8/9)
  Ladysmith Black Mambazo   (8/9)
  And Then There Were None   (8/9-18)
  Seussical   (8/9-25)
  Spamalot   (8/9-27)
  The Doo Wop Project   (8/10)
  SitS: Borowsky Trio   (8/10)

 ◄ Expanded Calendar ►



Photo Galleries

 

Miss Berlin-Gorham Competition 2012 New England Brewfest 2014 RiverFire, Berlin, NH 2012 Sugar Hill Lupine Festival Gallery 2012 Bristol-Gorham Foliage
Quick Links

 






Business Directory

 

 

                      more ►  

 

 

Attractions

 


Area Attractions opening/closing schedules.


  Alpine Adventures
  Clark's Trading Post
  Cog Railway
  Conway Scenic Railroad
  Flume
  Fort Jefferson Fun Park
  Jericho Mountain ATV Park
  Kancamagus Highway
  Littleton Riverwalk
  Lost River Gorge
  Mountain Meadow Funplex
  Mt. Washington Auto Road
  Polar Caves
  Santa's Village
  Storyland
  Vertical Ventures
  Whale's Tail Water Park
  Woodstock Inn & Brewery

 

more ►  

 

Community Profiles

 

  Bethlehem
  Bretton Woods
  Colebrook
  Conway
  Franconia
  Gorham
  Hanover
  Jackson
  Lebanon
  Lincoln
  Littleton
  North Conway
  Pittsburg
  Plymouth
  Twin Mountain
  Whitefield
  Wolfeboro

more ►  

 

Recreation and Tourism

 

  25 Great Summer Adventures
  Farm To Table Restaurants
  Hiking To Crash Sites
  Little Ski Areas
  Local Movie Theaters
  Local Performance Theaters
  Moose Tours

 

more ►  

 

Other Resources

  NH Cabins & Cottages
  NH Census Info
  NH Data (OEP)
  NH Fishing Reports
  NH Foliage Report
  NH Hiking Trail Conditions
  NH Lottery
  NH Movie Guide
  NH Road Conditions
  NH Ski Reports
  NH Snowmobile Trail Reports
  NH State Parks
  NH Town Officials Directory
  NH Weather
  Summer Safety Tips [.pdf]
  White Mtn. National Forest
  VisitNH.Gov

 

 

 

Copyright 2012-2018 by George C. Jobel, 603-491-4340. All Rights Reserved.