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“As a therapist, I appreciate working with horses as a powerful way to stabilize the nervous system and help individuals with grief and trauma learn to regulate themselves. It is also a powerful opportunity to experience a safe bond. The Common Ground team does a great job of creating a safe and nurturing environment where those who are hurting can continue their healing journey.”

- Jamie Eaton, MS, LCPC

    “I have experienced Common Ground from two entirely different perspectives.  First, as a participant, the experience was as penetrating as a horse's eyes.  If you are open and willing to trust, you can forge a connection that can be life changing. I carry that bond with me everyday.  Second, I refer veterans to Common Ground that spend time at our Warrior Call Ranch.  Those experiences, for all participants, have been impactful and lasting. I believe Common Ground is truly Remarkable Ground”.  

- Rick Kell, CEO Troops First Foundation

“I came to Paradise through Common Ground and Troops Foundation when I met Tom.  He made me feel very relaxed and at ease.  Elizabeth helped foster a connection and I was allowed to open up about some of the experiences I had while I was deployed and some experiences I had while I was younger, and Tom was there to listen, and not judge and he was great.  I just felt I made a real connection with Tom. It was a special and amazing experience and I am very grateful. It has helped me a lot."

- Army, Chris S

“Last week I had the distinct pleasure of visiting Common Ground at Paradise Stables for Equine Therapy.  To experience grief therapy through Equine Therapy is nothing short of amazing.  The bond that you form between yourself and the horses is one that is unforgettable.  I was actually trying to figure out how to get my horse into a car to take home so I could continue loving him!  The staff was amazing and caring and very in tune with why we were there.  If I could, I would go back as often as they would let me”. 

- Living Through Loss, Deena L
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“Thank you from all of us at Brooks House for the wonderful experience of Equine Therapy.  We all made such beautiful memories that we will cherish forever!  I especially loved that we each had our own horse, and in my case Ryan the mule.  This program is so encouraging and helpful and helped me gain my confidence back”. 

- Brooks House resident, Samantha 

“By coming to Common Ground and this beautiful farm, I was able to leave all the drama in my life behind and focus on breathing and staying in the moment with Frosty.  I forgot how to really breathe.”   Helping up Mission,  Angie. 

- Helping Up Mission,  Angie

“I was really not in a good place mentally and I didn't have anyone to talk to about it, mainly because we are not supposed to show weakness.  Meeting Elizabeth & Joe and getting to know Strawberry has changed my life.  I finally feel free to open up and work on my PTSD.”   

- Police Officer, Anynomous

"I went under protest, but I'm so glad I did. Ryan was lovable and he stayed right there with me. Never in my life have I felt taken care of....NEVER.  I thank God for this experience."

Helping Up Mission, Judy B

- Helping Up Mission, Judy B

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"What a joy to connect women in recovery with the healing power found at Common Ground! These women bring their fears, anxieties, and trauma to this place and are met with welcome, challenge, and growth. To know their individual stories while witnessing the interconnectedness with their equine partners is amazing! This program is life-changing for many."

- Helping Up Mission, Donna Mercer, Chaplin for Woman and Children

"It was a wonderful experience. I grew up with some scary horse history. I was able to mingle and care for them at Common Ground. I'm no longer afraid. My favorite part was leaning over Strawberry and letting her take my weight. The staff and volunteers were great! I would love to go back."

- Helping Up Mission,  Tina T

"Common Ground was a spiritual experience for me. I connected with Tom as he seemed to look into my soul and invited me to let go of my anxieties and grief. There is power in connecting with such a large, but gentle animal. I felt he was genuinely concerned about me. This experience brought out the depth of my lingering trauma. It helped to be surrounded by the staff and volunteers of Common Ground who cared for me on my journey to healing. They were responsive to my needs."  

- Helping Up Mission, Cindy

“Common Ground at Paradise Stables is a very peaceful and special place.  As I was driving here I could feel my stress lifting, even though I was scared of horses and I didn't know what to expect.  I am blessed to have experienced building my relationship with Jack.  He made me laugh, and I haven't done that in a long time.”  

- Living Through Loss, Katie

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