Marley's Mission is a place where hope comes alive for children and families who have experienced trauma. Marley's Mission advocates for child abuse awareness and prevention while providing an effective, alternative therapy model for children who have experienced trauma. Our model is referred to as Equine-Assisted Psychotherapy (EAP) and Equine-Assisted Learning (EAL); this model integrates horses into therapy treatment. EAP and EAL help children who are not having success or who are experiencing a road block in traditional therapy.

Since opening in July 2010, all the services provided at Marley's Mission are free of charge to children and families who have experienced trauma. Last year, Marley's Mission provided over 2030 therapy hours to clients. This totals almost 26 sessions per week.

We often are asked: "Why are your services free?"

It is important to Marley's Mission that barriers to treatment and healing are eliminated. Frequently, families are limited in seeking help because of a lack of health insurance or the cost of treatment. Our services are free in order to break these barriers. This allows Marley's Mission to provide treatment regardless of a family's financial abilities. Another common barrier to treatment is transportation - the ability to get to therapy. To overcome this obstacle, Marley's Mission provides transportation services as needed to families. Marley's Mission logs around 220 miles per week in client travel and about 11,440 miles per year.

To provide our services, Marley's Mission has to raise funds for our operating costs, such as compensation for our therapists and equine specialists, as well as funds for the care, food and shelter of our horses. We organize numerous fundraising events, such as the recently held third annual Blue Ribbon Gala in February. Many local organizations, community groups and even individuals hold fundraisers on our behalf such as birthday party donations, pasta dinners, Mary Kay parties and special donations made in memory or honor of someone.

Another source of our funding is through grants and foundation funds. One special fund we have is The R. Matthew Burne Hope and Healing Fund, which was created to perpetually support Marley's Mission's healing of children who have suffered emotional trauma. The fund was created with a gift from Marley's Mission board member Denise Vitali Burne in memory of her brother. In 2012, the Hope and Healing Fund provided children with 190 therapy sessions and 285 therapy session hours.

If you are interested in helping to raise funds for Marley's Mission or want to join us for an upcoming fundraising event, please visit our website under www.marleysmission.com/events or email our director of events, Noelle DePietro, at Noelle@marleysmission.com. For confidential inquires on our services, call founder/program director April Loposky at 937-9399.

Marley's Mission sees children between the ages of six and 18 years old. Since opening in July 2010, we have seen more than 180 children from across seven counties: Lackawanna, Susquehanna, Luzerne, Carbon, Bradford, Wayne and Pike. For confidential inquires on our services, contact April Loposky, founder and program director, at 937-9399.

If you are interested in being a donor or volunteer, contact Rebecca Haggerty, vice president of the board of directors, at 687-0926 or rebecca@marleysmission.com.