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Why Horses?

Do you remember having a passion for something, maybe as a child, and you just knew it HAD to be a part of your life at some point?  Something that was such an integral part of who you really are as a person you weren't or aren't able to let it go? 


That is exactly what horses have been for the Co-Founders of Courageous Connections. Sue and Kathy have had a life long desire to be close to horses.  Together they turned this heart-felt desire into Courageous Connections, a means of offering others the experience of engaging with horses first hand to feel their magnificence up close. 

Our Approach

We exist to bring humans and horses together to empower participants with challenges towards achieving their individual goals. People with physical, cognitive, or emotional challenges, as well as the elderly, face a host of similar struggles leaving them with feelings of powerlessness, incompetence, and exclusion. There are many published reports showing the positive changes in confidence, communication skills, self-esteem, and physical strength through Equine Therapies, and we have seen the magic that occurs when people with diverse concerns partner with horses to transform their challenges into capabilities.

One of our core beliefs is that the horses are valued and treated as integral partners in our program.  Before each class begins we make the time for participants to greet their horse and build their relationship.

Our volunteers are an essential part of our program and we couldn't succeed without them.  We also strongly believe that there are many benefits to creating strong intergenerational bonds, and have encouraged seniors to share their experience and empathy with our younger participants. Our sessions have included volunteers from ages 11 - 82 years old and all of them have expressed their delight in being a part of this inspirational and heartwarming experience.  

Courageous Connections is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit in Snohomish County and is a PATH International Member Center and adhere to their standards to ensure the safety of the participants as well as the competence of our instructors. 


Our Instructors

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Kathy Sanders
Co-Founder & Instructor

Kathy has been a horse owner for 20 years, and a horse fanatic for her entire life!  She is Path Intl certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor and Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning. She loves bring horses into the lives of others who might not otherwise have the opportunity to experience these beings up close! Professionally she worked as a Senior Project Manager leading diverse teams toward completion of a common goal.   

Sue Eulau
Co-Founder & Instructor 

Sue has likewise been a horse fanatic her entire life and has volunteered in other adaptive riding programs. She is also a Path Intl certified Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning.  Professionally, she has been an Oncology Nurse for 30 years, and has worked as a daycare director for special needs children.  She loves to volunteer and has worked at Bailey Bouche House with HIV positive clients and was a Washington State Foster Parent.  

Chloe Wilkins

Chloe has partnered with horses over the last 20 years has worked in therapeutic riding centers for the last 6years. She is a PATH Intl. Certified Instructor, Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning, and Mentor certified. Professionally, Chloe is working with At-Risk Youth in a behavioral school setting and completing her Chemical Dependency Professional License through Washington State. Chloe is passionate about therapeutic riding as it bridges the gap between humans and other sentient beings.  She marvels at the simple engagement with equines that lead to major life transitions.

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