Our Mission

The Center For Equine Assisted Wellness specializes in developing comprehensive equine assisted learning and wellness programs that promote healthy life choices and help people lead happier, more productive lives. We are proud to deliver and support the Warrior And War Horse, and HOPE with Horses programs to the Southern Tier of NYS. We also sponsor opportunities for children to experience the world of horses during special events and activities on our host farm.

The Warrior and War Horse Program

The Willis Ashley Foley, Jr. Warrior and War Horse program is designed to assist United States Veterans and active duty service men and women and their families cope with trauma and stress resulting from combat, long term depression, PTSD and reintegration issues, by reestablishing life skills and readjustment into civilian life by immersing them into thoughtfully designed, peer-to-peer, horse guided interactions. The program produced exceptional interactions, and it is now a fully supported program delivered by The Center.

Our program goals for veterans and their families:

  • To reduce the suicide rate in veterans
  • To provide a safe place to relax
  • To learn new life skills
  • To assist in reintegration
  •  To provide short and long term care in an holistic approach
  • To give back to those who so bravely and selflessly protect our freedom

Why Horses?

Through our understanding of the horses behavior and herd dynamics, we learn about the horses social and behavioral patterns, which can in turn, teach us about our own behaviors. Through thoughtfully guided Human/animal interactions, Veterans are able to make an important first step in reintegration to social norms and adjusting to life back in the U.S. What we do helps you to neutralize the effects these stresses present. This isn’t therapy, it is Veterans helping Veterans with horses as their guides. We are here to help you get back on the track to your personal best, and give you the opportunity to experience the power of horse guided learning and wellness.

The outcomes we wish for our clients are centered up an open atmosphere of sharing, and respect for privacy, and our farm provides a natural and comforting environment where soldiers can heal from scars and stress of combat. Clients will be working with a wide range of horses, as well as professionally trained therapy horses, and our team includes licensed mental health professionals and a credentialed staff of Certified Equine Specialists.

HOPE With Horses

During the spring of 2013, we began the development of one of our most important programs…to provide help, healing and hope to women with breast cancer. With 1 in 8 women facing a diagnosis of breast cancer, we felt compelled to support a unique program, inspired by the pioneering research and development of Catherine Hand. As we have piloted this program, we have found that the restorative, empowering change that occurs can be of benefit to all women and young girls, especially those rebuilding their lives after domestic abuse, assault, addictions and other traumatic experiences.

This program pairs the majestic horse with the powerful female spirit, and we proceed through a series of peaceful, centering, healing exercises that help bring restorative energy to the body and the soul. Our sessions provide numerous benefits including re-sensitization to touch, activation of the vagus nerve to address digestive, respiratory and circulatory issues, increased mind-body awareness and harmony through meditation, breath work and creative imagery and music, but most of all, HOPE for peace, HOPE for awareness and a stronger sense of self.

A gentle and caring team of women will provide support, caring and compassion to women in need. Women helping women, women creating hope.

This comprehensive program includes the option for private, mounted therapeutic exercise, and private groundwork based sessions. These sessions are offered at no cost.

How We are Funded

We strive to offer our programs at no cost to our clients. This is made possible through the generous support of donors, and also through private grants and volunteer service. The Center for Equine Assisted Wellness is an IRS certified 501c3 organization. Our scholarships are extremely limited for 2016, however, we encourage you to contact us, as we try to never turn away a client in need. Beginning June 1st, 2016, our organization will be supported through curriculum development, and professional training opportunities.

How You Can Help

These are a few examples of ways that you can help make these life changing program possible, but we welcome your help in any way you wish to give:

  • Volunteer your time with our program development
  • Volunteer your professional expertise in education or counseling
  • Be a hands on mentor during our sessions

What's New in 2016

It has been goal from the beginning, to create and deliver exceptional programming that exceeded current acceptable practices. We are also a "horse first" organization, and we believe that the horses who share their gifts with us need to be treated with the utmost respect and care.

Beginning June 1st, 2016, we will host our last season for scholarship supported, direct client services. We will be returning to our core mission of program development, and education. Each year we will begin the development of a new equine assisted curriculum, which will be piloted on our host farm during the summer months. In the fall, the data will be analyzed, and the program curriculum will be created. The finished curriculum packages will be available for sale to certified EAL/EAP professionals. We will also host professional training for EAL/EAP professionals. Both the Warrior and War Horse, and HOPE with Horses program guides and training will be available for purchase in the fall of 2016.