The War Horse Awareness Foundation was founded by Deanna Lennox in 2010. As a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Deanna has over 16 years of service in law enforcement and currently serves as a City Councillor in her community of Fort Saskatchewan.
After struggling with depression following a career ending injury and coming face-to-face with the traumatic events she encountered throughout her career, she embarked on a journey to find a sense of health and peace in her life. Deanna’s experiences are chronicled in her book “Damage Done: A Mountie’s Memoir” published by HarperCollins Publishing Canada.
The War Horse Awareness Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping frontline service providers and their families live the lives they deserve. Our organization offers opportunities to learn about critical and relevant information related to stress and trauma. In addition to education, we also take every opportunity possible for participants to experience the benefits of working with horses. These opportunities assist in helping those who serve to discover the resources and tools available in navigating one’s way through stress and trauma related injuries. The way in which we choose to work with horses is unique because although we are here to serve First Responders, we also ask the question of “What do the horses get out of it?” Our goal is to provide more than just a “feel good” experience that is often hollow and one-sided. We are committed to teaching you the language needed to establish a relationship with horses that will open the door to seeing the world from a different perspective. We offer a peer-supported opportunities to view stress, trauma and life from the perspective of the horse, which is often life-changing.
Our MANDATE is to:
1. Educate frontline service providers about occupational stress injuries.
2. Educate frontline service providers about how trauma can negatively affect the lives of those who serve and their families.
3. Educate frontline service providers about the resources, services and programs available to assist them and their families in living healthier and more balanced lives.
4. Provide opportunities for frontline service providers to experience how working with horses can help those who have been exposed to trauma.
We also recognize that horses are not for everyone! War Horse is also proud to organize events that are focused on providing information an experiences with both traditional and non-traditional treatment modalities.
Some of our past features treatment modalities and coping strategies:
EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing)
Nutrition - juicing
Resiliency Workshops - Dr. Jeff Morley
Who are Frontline Service Providers?
Frontline Service Providers are people who are in the trenches of service each and every day. Police, Fire Fighters, Emergency Medical Technicians, Canadian Forces and other professions who services are required in times of crisis. Such professions include, but are not limited to: 9-1-1 Dispatch Operators, Nurses, Doctors, Teachers, Corrections Officers, Canada Border Services Officers and Social Workers.
These individuals put their physical and emotional safety on the line in a cumulative effort to assist, protect and educate our communities.
Through information and education the War Horse Foundation is assisting Canadian Forces members and Frontline Service Providers build resiliency and cope with Post Traumatic Stress Injuries (PTSI / D), Anxiety, Depression and other stress related injuries and issues.
The People behind the Foundation
The War Horse Awareness Foundation is comprised of 10 very passionate individuals:
Deanna Lennox - President
Jeremy Wagner - Vice President
Michele Engman - Vice President
Shelley Ricketts - Treasurer
Cheryl Kabarchuk - Secretary
Trudy Nastiuk - Director
Casey DesChamp - Director
Victoria Willis - Director
Deanna Hagen - Director