Project Description

Horses Healing Humans, Stonington, CT
Equine Therapy Organization Buys 37 Acres of Land, Acquires USDA Loan, and Creates 7 New Jobs

Lee Paradis is the founder of Horses Healing Humans, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to providing rehabilitation services to those suffering conditions such as traumatic brain injuries and PTSD with the help of horses. Lee was looking for assistance developing her board of directors, gaining access to capital and growing her business in other ways, and came to the Connecticut Small Business Development Center (CTSBDC) for assistance. She was paired with professional business advisor, Matt Nemeth.

With the help of GrowthWheel, one of the many tools in CTSBDC’s suite of software utilities, Matt helped Lee decide to populate her board of directors with people who shared Lee’s vision for Horses Healing Humans. With this new board, Lee was able to increase revenue as well as the quality and scope of her company’s services.

Horses Healing Humans was renting the barn and land for the Equine Therapy Center used in the therapeutic process, but Matt and Senator Joe Courtney helped point Lee in the direction of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The USDA offered 100% financing through the Rural Community Facility loan for the purchase of the entire facility.

Horses Healing Humans has committed to the purchase of the 37 acres with barn, and an attached building to be used for further therapeutic services. They plan to continue to better serve those in need of professional rehabilitation. With Lee’s ingenuity and Matt’s advising, 2 new jobs were created at Horses Healing Humans while 2 jobs were saved. Lee is also hoping to hire 5 new employees following the finalization of the USDA loan.

With Matt’s advice, Lee is also planning to create a disaster preparedness plan for her business in order to provide sustainability and help protect the future of the program, as part of the CTSBDC’s PrepareCT initiative.

“Working with Horses Healing Humans has been an absolute pleasure, and very inspiring. I identified strongly with her great passion for helping others in need, and I look forward to continuing to work with her and her business in the future,” says Matt.

Lee has cited Matt as one of her staunchest supporters and helpers along her entrepreneurial journey.

“Matt has been an enthusiastic supporter, offering both sound advice and clear direction while guiding Horses Healing Humans toward collaborative relationships that support the mission and vision for the business. His help in brainstorming ideas and finding novel ways to realize them have been a great resource,” she recounts.

Lee further states, “We have come as far as we have due to the constant support, encouragement and belief in the importance of our work from Matt and countless others who have cheered us on and worked tirelessly to help us achieve our goals.”

“Working with Horses Healing Humans has been an absolute pleasure, and very inspiring. I identified strongly with her great passion for helping others in need, and I look forward to continuing to work with her and her business in the future.” -Matt Nemeth, CTSBDC Business Advisor

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