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Sisters in Service at the Camp Liberty Open House

Veteran Sisters in Service PGA Golf Outing

Veteran Sisters in Service Retreat 2017




Brave Hearts Estate is a 238 acre ranch that was donated to Operation Injured Soldiers by a patriot and generous supporter of our injured veterans. Opened in the spring of 2015, the Brave Hearts Estate serves as a retreat destination with a main house, Campfires, signing & s’mores, Hunting, Cable Tv & Board games and a wide variety of nearby adaptive sporting amenities.

Located in the northwestern corner of Michigan, Brave Hearts Estate is nestled just outside the city of Pellston. Veterans & their families can enjoy many nearby attractions:

Brave Hearts Estate offers completely free lodging for our veterans and their families. The main house has 8 bedrooms, a dining room, family room, living room, and large fully equipped kitchen and laundry room. The estate is wheelchair accessible on the main floor.

A full time caretaker /manager will be on site 24/7 to support vets and their families.

Phone number to the estate: 231.539.7111

The Veteran Sisters in Service met on Jan 16th at the Garden View Apartments in Detroit.  There was a great deal of talking laughting and eating.  Topics of interest were: 

1.  Registration for the May 2016 Retreat at the VFW National Home

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2.  A Family Fun Day and Barbeque on April 9th at Camp Liberty 

3.  The introduction of the 2 women from the DDC Dance studios who were there to gather material for a dance routine honoring our women veterans

4.  The introduction of a pilot program from Eisenhower Center for women both veterans and Athletes

Gatherings for those women who have served in the U.S. Military.  There is no agenda it is an opportunity to talk and share with others that have been where you were and maybe are.  If you are interested in PARTICIPATING email:  wswvets@gmail.com or to see dates and locations along with comments from previous gathering, visit wswvets.org.


If you are interested in having a meeting that is closer to your home, let me know and we will arrange that.  See comments for the first meetings.  click here


Meeting Dates:  January 16th


WSWVETS is excited about hosting a Veteran Sisters in Service Gathering on Saturday, January 16th from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.  We will be serving lunch and refreshments.  The location in the Gardenview Apartments Building C at Joy Road and Southfield in Detroit.  Easily reached by bus.    https://goo.gl/maps/MAkAo9FEXEC2


This is a opportunity for women who have served to get together and share a meal and stories.  For those of you who do not have a Veteran Sisters in Service t-shirt, we would like to provide one at the gathering.  Just email me your RSVP and your t-shirt size to wswvets@gmail.com 


call for additional  details.  810-599-6014



Arlene Callaghan



V eteran Sisters in Service Mission Statement

Our mission  as women who have served our country is to foster hope in our Sistens in Services by:

  • Building TRUST in our fellow Soldiers
  • SHARING experiences without fear of jusgement
  • Promote  HEALING  through mentoring
  • Doing whatever it takes to help each other MOVE FORWARD  in our lives and relationships

If you would like to join this group of women or purchase a T-shirt, Hat or Sweatshirt  please click here.  

Our Activities



I haven't felt that exhilarated in a while.

> I just want to thank you for all your hard work and getting us together.

> Your tireless work is part of my healing process.


I had such an amazing time yesterday How wonderful to have met you ALL
Hope to see you beautiful women very soon!

I don't know how anyone else felt or still might feel but I found it a true blessing.  As I sat there and really listened to the other women veterans stories you realize that you are not alone and that you are not the only one that has faced or continues to face challenges.

I feel that by coming together that we can find strength from each other and a true support system so that each of us as we move forward in our lives and the many challenges that  come along as well will have someone that we can turn to, even if it is just a simple "I understand, for we will know that they really do understand because they have been there and done that or had "that" done to them and they can relate"


 For the most part......We all came in as strangers yesterday afternoon however we were able to share some pretty personal "stuff" with each other cause we knew we were "amoung comrades" and that we were safe there and by the end we were all hugging !



Attending the Camp Liberty Gala

EAGALA Equine Assisted Therapy


The EAGALA Model provides a standard and structure for providing Equine Assisted Psychotherapy and Equine Assisted Learning sessions.  Practicing within a model establishes a foundation of key values and beliefs, and provides a basis of good practice and professionalism.  The EAGALA Model provides a framework of practice where, within that framework, there are infinite opportunities for creativity and adaptability to various therapeutic and facilitating styles.

  • The Team Approach -An Equine Specialist, a Mental Health professional, and horses work together with clients in all EAGALA sessions

  • Focus on the ground – No horseback riding is involved.Instead, effective and deliberate techniques are utilized where the horses are metaphors in specific ground-based experiences.

  • Solution Oriented -The basis of the EAGALA Model is a belief that all clients have the best solutions for themselves when given the opportunity to discover them.Rather than instructing or directing solutions, we allow our clients to experiment, problem-solve, take risks, employ creativity, and find their own solutions that work best for them.

  • Code of Ethics – EAGALA has high standards of practice &ethics, with an ethics committee and protocol for upholding these standards, ensuring best practices and the highest level of care.


  • The Horse:Horses have many characteristics which lend them to being effective agents of change, including honesty, awareness, and ability with nonverbal communication.The roll of the horse in an EAGALA session is to be themselves.

  • The Equine Specialist (ES):The ES chooses the horses to be used in sessions, works with the MH to structure sessions, keeps an equine log to document horse behaviors in sessions, stays aware of the safety and welfare of clients, horses, and team, and makes observations of horse SPUDS’s (an EAGALA-developed observation framework taught in the certification training program) which can bring in potential metaphors.

  • The Mental Health Professional (MH):The MH is responsible for treatment planning, documentation of clients, and ensuring ethical practice.The MH builds on the ES’s horse observations, bringing in the metaphoric and therapeutic/learning relevance of the session.


  • Women Veterans.Participants from varying branches of military service cn participte.    Equine therapy programs are developed for them to assist with MST (Military Sexual Trauma), PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) along with other issues related to re-entry into civilian life


    Goals of the participants


  • Better Communication Achieving peace

  • Overcoming fears

  • Ability to ask for help

  • Continue healing

  • Moving forward

Agenda for the day’s event:

  • 10 -11Introductions, housekeeping and discussion of goals

  • 11 – 12 Group horse activity (based on goals)

  • 12 – 1 Processing experiences from horse activity

  • 1 - 2Lunch

  • 2 - 3Individual horse activities (building on goals)

  • 3 - 4Processing experiences from horse activity and closure

Comments from the Vets:

" my experience with equine therapy was nothing less than profound!.  This was my first experience with it and I got way more out of it than I expected.  I learned a lot about myself and issues I need to work on.  The biggest and most important thing I learned is that my fears are not as huge as I make them out to be.  I can walk through my fears and I will be okay.  I also learned that I don’t trust my own decisions, therefore, whenever possible, I choose not to make a choice, even for the smallest things in life."

"I loved the fact that there was no strict agenda, the group went with the flow and it really felt natural.  I am glad Inger had one of her mentors there because with the two therapists it made me feel more at ease with the horses.  Although I was very excited to experience equine therapy I was a bit intimidated by the size and unpredictability of the animals.  But the ladies really made me feel safe and at ease.  I love the unconventional route that equine therapy provides a patient.  Sometimes even though you need to talk things out it is hard to say come things that are on your mind for fear of being judged.  Being able to talk to the horses felt natural and freed me of the fear of judgment. 

Comments from the Therapist: 

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to work with you and your women vets.  Using horses in equine therapy is always rewarding to me, our time in May was especially moving.  I was pleased to be welcomed into their day.


My takes aways from the day were numerous.  While the group worked together from the start, I noticed a confidence within each of the ladies build throughout the day.  They embraced the exercises with the horses and freely processed the work.  I do believe, they would have continued for as long as they were able.



The retreat was designed to give the women the opportunity to continue the trusts, healing and plan to move forward with their lives without the everyday distractions.  This is an annual retreat another is planned for Spring.  We can accomodate 12 women.  There is not charge for the women, lodging, food and in some cases transportation is included. 



WSWVETS is a tax deductible Charity through our Fiscal Sponsor (click here for details)

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