"It's animals helping people and people helping animals."
In 2009, Ranch Hands Rescue founder Bob Williams, discovered something magical by accident. Bob was diagnosed with PTSD in 1997, and while working with the abused and neglected animals he had taken into his sanctuary, he realized the mutually beneficial relationship that can be created between animals struggling with anxiety and humans struggling with anxiety.
He then consulted with experts to design a program that would allow him to create a nonprofit that would allow these animals in need to connect with people in need.
Today their fully licensed professional counselors specialize in trauma-focused therapy specifically geared towards those struggling with PTSD, those who have suffered from abuse, and many other mental health issues.
But what makes their program truly unique and the first of its kind is that while other equine-focused programs exist, Ranch Hands Rescue takes in farm animals of all kinds. At their facility in Argyle you'll find horses, pigs, donkeys and sheep.
They work hand-in-hand with other local organizations as an alternative for those who may not be responding to traditional methods of therapy. Their referrals come from all kinds of local agencies, but their three largest programs are for children, veterans and battered women.
Bob told us, "We know that not everyone will tell everything to a traditional counselor. But they will tell an animal. And we see it happen every day."
Because their services are free to those participating in their programs, Ranch Hands Rescue needs volunteers and monetary donations. They currently have 17 kids and 5 veterans on a waiting list for treatment, so as you can imagine, there's always a huge need for donation so they can get these individuals in for counseling.
The Ranch Hands Rescue website says:
"The needs go beyond regular care... many of our animal partners need medication and constant visits to the veterinarian for check ups and progress reports. Together we can give these innocent victims an opportunity to get back what is rightfully theirs - their dignity."
*Learn more about Ranch Hands Rescue by visiting www.RanchHandRescue.org.
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