Healing with Horses
Organized by: Milissa Brintle
Ever since I was a little girl, horses have been a huge part of my life. Every weekend, I would escape from the stress, bullies, and disappointments of life and join my grandfather on our farm. I helped him every step of the way, digging post holes, fixing fences, and adding stalls to an old shed he leased on an adjacent property to build a makeshift barn. For years, I enjoyed the days on my grandfather's farm brushing the horses and riding around the fields. These were the best memories of my childhood and knowing that I had this to look forward to got me through some of the hardest times of my life. I was bullied relentlessly when I was in middle school and without the horses as an outlet, I don't know how I would have coped.
In December of 2006, the day that I had finished my last exam of my first semester in college, I drove home to a full house of family members who let me know that my grandfather had passed away. This was the single most devastating moment of my life. The person who shared my dreams, believed in me, and always supported and stood for me when no one else did, was gone.
Fast forward to now. I have graduated from the University of NC at Greensboro with my bachelor's degree in Psychology and I plan to use my grandfather's farm as a safe haven for children, teens, and young adults who are suffering from mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety, ptsd, along with those struggling with addiction and victims of abuse. I plan to use equine therapy to improve the quality of life of the souls who come down my drive. I will incorporate the EAGALA model into my non-profit which utilizes the services of an equine specialist and a licensed mental health professional working together as a team.
I have many of the basic resources to make this a reality such as the land, the fences, and the horses. The only thing we are missing is a barn and the funding necessary to get our project off the ground.