Take a virtual tour with Andrew Lapin, Executive Director and Founder courtesy of ActonTV

When a client is focused on the "here and now" on the farm, the staff said it can be easier to work through whatever is fueling the addiction.

"We're allowing them to take whatever is happening for them, their story, and put it out on the horses and what the horse's interactions are," Madera said. "And by doing that, therapy can happen so much more quickly than it does in a traditional model."

Andrew Lapin never forgot the healing power of the human-animal interaction he witnessed as a missionary in Latvia and Lithuania a decade ago.

To provide a similar alternative to traditional counseling in the United States, the Littleton resident left his career as a professional fund-raiser for nonprofits, earned a master’s degree in clinical mental health counseling, and founded Cultivate Counseling Center in 2015. Full Article 

"When there’s not a war going on, you’re in this mentality where you scan every single person to try to figure out if they’re a threat or not, but you don’t know because there’s no profile,” said Kaffe, who worked with an equine specialist and riding instructor at Cultivate, which also helped her with academics and reading. “I did a lot of mindfulness exercises. (Cultivate) helps me with a lot of issues, like self-confidence issues, trust and feeling in control. I had a really good support system here and that really helped. I’m a completely different person. I don’t even recognize myself sometimes." Full Article  

 “Traditional therapy says, ‘I’m going to give you these coping skills,’ but there’s no opportunity to practice them,” Lapin says. “There’s no place to observe, am I doing this right? Is this what you meant, therapist? Here, you can really see what your self-healing looks like.” Full Article

“In this area, access to mental health is very limited. There are two options. There’s community mental health, which means you’re going to Leominster, Lowell, Framingham and you’ll sit on a 600-person wait list for about six months just to be assigned a therapist you hope it works out with. The other option is private practice. These people are doing good work, but it’s very expensive and there’s high demand, so they also have wait lists,” Full Article