Local non-profit taking part in Inaugural Parade - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Local non-profit taking part in Inaugural Parade


DEERFIELD (WKOW) -- A local organization that uses horses to help veterans will take part in the Presidential Inaugural Parade on January 21.

AT EASE, 'A Therapeutic Equine Assisted Self-Confidence Experience,' is based in Deerfield. The group's name is long, but their mission is simple; to use the power of animals to help heal.

"Somebody may come out to us who's struggling in life, but we don't have to know really what that problem is," founder Paulette Stelpflug says. The group works mostly with veterans suffering from PTSD. "They all can help us feel better in life and that's a long time proven," she says about the dozen horses used in the program.

AT EASE has been chosen to walk in the President Obama's Inaugural Parade. Stelpflug says she didn't expect the honor and hopes the opportunity can allow the organization to grow. So far, they've helped hundreds.

"They know how to give love back and this is what it's all about," veteran Terry Virgil says about the horses. Vietnam veteran Dennis Landen is just getting involved, but knows the healing ability of animals well. "The horses, I don't know why or how but they seem to know what you're going through," he says.

AT EASE is raising money to help cover their travel costs to Washington, DC. Click here to learn more about the organization and fundraiser.

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