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Veterans, Therapeutic Horseback Riding & A Girl’s Date

Wife.Mother.Teacher. Facebook fans saw that yesterday, I was SO excited to enjoy a girl’s night with my dear friend Kari. We grew up together riding horses in the local 4-H program and have remained friends ever since. Since getting married & becoming moms our friendship has changed. Life priorities have taken away from friendship time, so when the opportunity came up for a girl’s night last night we were both thrilled!

CHUM, a local therapeutic horseback riding program, that is very close to Kari’s heart was holding a charity dinner & screening of the documentary Riding My Way Back produced by Robin Fryday & Peter Rosenbaum.

Here’s what the Riding My Way Back website has to say about the film:

“Riding My Way Back is a short documentary that chronicles one soldier’s journey back from the brink of suicide.  In 2010, Staff Sergeant Aaron Heliker returned from multiple deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan with traumatic brain injury (TBI) and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), in addition to third-degree burns and nerve damage from a roadside bomb.  At his most desperate and isolated, on 42 medications and suicidal, Aaron is introduced to the unlikeliest of saviors:  a horse named Fred.  Through caring for Fred and building mutual trust, Aaron begins the difficult process of reconnecting to the world around him and healing the terrible, invisible wounds of war that had nearly defeated him.”

If you’re a fan of horses or veterans, this is a film for you (even better if you’re a fan of both)! Check out the trailer to see why. Staff Sergeant Aaron Heliker truly found his match in Fred the horse. It’s easy to see their bond and love for one another.

For those of us that have been blessed to have horses in our life – we know their therapeutic power – but only recently has the world of science started to document the amazing benefits. Do you know a veteran suffering from PTSD or TBI? The Wounded Warrior Project can help – veterans of combat from The Gulf War to present can receive funding for therapeutic riding through the project.
Don’t know a veteran, but interested in helping to support the cause? Consider donating to CHUM or The Wounded Warrior Project. Big or small, every donation helps.
Do you live near CHUM in Mid-Michigan? Mark your calendar for their Labor Day 2015 “Run for CHUM” event – a certified Half Marathon & 5K to benefit the CHUM Therapeutic Riding Center in Dansville, MI. The race will be held on September 7, 2015. Stay tuned to the Running Foundation to register after the New Year!
Have you experienced the healing power of animals? Do you have a beloved veteran in your life? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate marketing links that compensate me for sales.

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