Please help us show our most vulnerable veterans they are safe and loved. For more information on how we came to do this, keep reading.
My husband and I are U.S. Army Veterans. We are both honored to have served our Country and appreciative of the VA for all they do. After coming back from deployment, however, and taking advantage of groups, individual therapy, and even pharmaseuticals in an attempt to overcome PTSD, depression, and anxiety, there was still something missing. In 2016, we pioneered the Compassionate Warrior Training Program, a 6-month intensive program using tribal wisdom and nature to aid in the processing of trauma and assist with the transition to civillian life. We participated in nature-based therapy, to include 4 sweat lodges run by native veterans, and it literally saved our lives.
Nature-based retreats are the missing link, and we observed that the VA system is simply not set up to provide this. We committed to creating space for soldiers to process in a non-clinical setting, by connecting with the earth, growing food, and experiencing nature. This retreat center will not only provide space for the VA to use as they grow the Compassionate Warrior Training Program, but will create sacred space where veterans can find peace, heal old wounds, and participate in a community that understands where they've been and supports their individual healing.
Whether we get this money now and begin hosting veterans this fall, or it takes us years, this is our life's work, and we are committed to making it happen. Helping our fellow Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines is our soul's mission, something we need to do, and natural healing, through a re-connection with nature and community, is a journey we are honored to offer others for the rest of our lives.
- John Fotheringham
- Michelle Turner
- Katie Sumner
- Amber Hockensmith
- Enrique Verduzco
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