Home » Press Release: HorsePlay Therapy Center Establishes Rise Up for Veterans Program

Press Release: HorsePlay Therapy Center Establishes Rise Up for Veterans Program

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 25, 2021
Contact: Vicky Carregal, President & CEO, 904-315-8525 or
Stefanie Stark, External Relations, (904) 315-8525
horseplaytherapycenter@gmail.com
horseplaytherapy.org

ST. AUGUSTINE, FL, 22 JUNE 2021 – The Board of Directors of HorsePlay Therapy Center officially announced today the establishment of the RISE UP FOR VETERANS program in Northeast Florida, providing Equine Assisted Therapy (E.A.T.) to wounded Veterans and Veterans suffering from PTSD, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), Sexual Assault, and Hazing Trauma. The RISE UP FOR VETERANS program will officially be launched on Veterans Day, November 11, 2021.

The mission of the Rise Up for Veterans program is to enhance the quality of life for our service men and women and their families by bringing horses and people together in a comprehensive Equine Assisted Therapy program that addresses and heals the physical and emotional wounds of war. Equine Assisted Therapy for Veterans will be offered at HorsePlay Therapy Center’s newly acquired location, Spirit Run Stables, a large 70 acre serene ranch located at 6160 State Road 305, Elkton, FL.

Vicky Carregal, Founder, President & CEO of HorsePlay Therapy said, “I love that we get to be a part of something so special. Our goal is to give hope and healing to families in our community through the power of the horse.”

The military and V.A. recognize that Equine Assisted Therapy (E.A.T.) is a beneficial treatment for wounded Veterans and those diagnosed with PTSD. With the November 11, 2021, launch of RISE UP FOR VETERANS, HorsePlay Therapy Center’s proposed projects include:

a. Providing individual Equine Assisted Therapy to Veterans suffering from PTSD, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), sexual assault, hazing trauma, and combat wounded Veterans

b. Providing group Equine Assisted therapy for male and female Veterans suffering from PTSD

c. Adding comprehensive Hippotherapy and Equine Assisted Therapy to Northeast Florida’s successful healthcare and community programs.

d. Consulting and coordinating with St. Johns County government agencies, Veterans Affairs agencies, and local medical and mental health providers, ensuring that Veterans in our community are offered Equine Assisted Therapy.

Equine therapy can be the difference between life and death for a Veteran struggling with PTSD. HorsePlay Therapy Center will offer comprehensive clinical support services and Equine Assisted Therapies for Veterans. Equine Assisted Therapy consists of both individual and group therapies that incorporate the movement of the horse, horsemanship activities, horse-human interaction, and mental health therapy in an open air, equine environment. Both riding and non-mounted activities help rebuild the trust and connection vital to physically and emotionally wounded Veterans and their loved ones, supporting post-traumatic growth, mental health wellness, and improvement in the overall quality of life for Veterans and their families. All activities are conducted by certified equine instructors, licensed mental health counselors, and trained volunteers.

HorsePlay Therapy Center has launched a comprehensive capital campaign to raise the necessary funding, based on the organization’s outstanding history of providing comprehensive Hippotherapy services to children with special needs in St. Johns County, to launch the RISE UP FOR VETERANS program.

Carregal added, “It’s a high calling and humbling for me and the HPT team of therapists, volunteers, and board members to serve the special needs community, and now the Veteran community as well, in St. Johns County through equine therapy for all. I know this county’s champions have important goals to advance the common good, and I look forward to taking the time to understand their vision to make a difference in the lives of the children and Veterans we serve in Northeast Florida.”

The Board of Directors of HorsePlay Therapy Center is committed to raising the level of visibility for HorsePlay Therapy Center’s services, both for special needs children in Northeast Florida, as well as Veterans with PTSD and the impact of equine therapy on growth and healing in these populations. No child or Veteran is ever denied treatment services based on insurance status or their ability to pay. The organization plays a unique role in the community and is a model for how physicians, mental health providers, the V.A., and nonprofit therapy centers can work together to affect real change in the lives of the people they serve.

HORSEPLY THERAPY CENTER, a nonprofit 501c3 charity in St. Augustine, FL, established in 2016 to offer Hippotherapy (Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, and Speech Therapy on horseback) to children with special needs in Northeast Florida, is expanding its services to include Equine Assisted Therapy to wounded Veterans and Veterans diagnosed with PTSD. The clinical model of Hippotherapy and Equine Assisted Therapy offered through HorsePlay Therapy Center is the only comprehensive medical model treatment center of its kind in Northeast Florida for children with special needs and Veterans with PTSD.

For interviews with Vicky Carregal, President & CEO, or Stefanie Stark, External Relations, please call (904) 315-8525 or email horseplaytherapycenter@gmail.com. For more information, visit, www.horseplaytherapy.org.