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Real Happiness Starts In A Stable

Today we’d like to share the story behind our Real Happiness Mobile Horse Therapy Unit.

The unit was born through a conversation with a group 4H teen girls on the way home from a visit with Dr. Pol. Listening to the radio, a story came on about a water company selling Real Water by the gallon for $25.00 and that they couldn't keep up with the demand from customers. The girls thought if people buy real water, EAD could "sell" Real Happiness and agreed that real happiness does start in a stable.

When the COVID pandemic hit, we opened our barn to groups of Alzheimer's and dementia residents in two senior living centers. These individuals would spend an hour with the horses. The impact was so profound, so necessary, and so real, that when the lock down happened it simply was not an option to stop bringing the joy and connection of the horses to folks isolated from loved ones.

The Real Happiness Mobile Horse Therapy Unit became an outreach of EAD in 2020, with two horses going window to window of Senior Living Centers, bringing joy, happiness and hope to the residents. 2021 brought even more opportunities to bring joy, visiting 34 centers, tripling the impact of the Mobile Unit with the help of a dozen volunteers, and a fearless leader.

In 2022, we would like to double our impact with the Real Happiness Mobile Horse Therapy Unit. Help us meet our goal of $5,000 raised towards the $12,000 we will need to purchase a reliable horse trailer. Please give a gift online: or mail a check made out to Equine Assisted Development, put Giving Tuesday in the memo line (3224 32nd St SE Grand Rapids, MI 49512).

We cannot wait to expand this popular horse therapy experience to those throughout Kent County and beyond to continue reaching senior living facilities, their staff, residents and families. Would you help meet the need? We are counting on you! Thank you so much for your generosity and support.

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