Bergen Equestrian's A Stable Life Program has been in the mental wellness space since 2012 and has expanded its mission to open an equine emotional wellness center.
(Leonia, N.J. – January 22, 2024) Bergen Equestrian Center (BEC) opens Bergen County's first equine emotional wellness center, A Stable Life, located in Overpeck Park in Leonia, New Jersey, about 10 minutes from the George Washington Bridge.

A Stable Life is an equine-facilitated therapy program founded by Bergen County resident Anna Gassib, who is an Associate Counselor in Equine therapy, Trauma, Gestalt, and Person-Centered therapies.  Anna and her team of professionals, offer customized unique workshops, designed by a caring and skilled group of mental health experts, to help those struggling with trauma, post-traumatic stress disorders, domestic violence, victims of crime, emotional or relationship issues, addiction, grief, loss, and more.
A Stable Life is a well-respected wellness center, focusing on mental health and emotional well-being, working with individuals and agencies such as Women's Rights Information Center, Bergen Family Center, Bergen County Spring House- a halfway house for those recovering from addictions, Covenant House of Newark.
Utilizing its interdisciplinary approach to healing, coupled with the exceptional qualifications of its staff, A Stable Life offers a variety of services for those looking for healing.  Cultural competency is a top value and treatment team members are comprised of licensed professionals who are representative of the community it serves, including a diversity of religions, cultures, and those who identify as LGBT+.
Therapists help integrate the feelings, thoughts and behaviors that arise as clients work with horses, and can help clients make sense of how horses respond to them and how that relates to other relationships in the client’s life. The horses are partners in the therapeutic process. For anxiety issues, for example, a session may start with the client doing breathing and grounding exercises in the company of a horse.  Anna Gassib explains, “Our horses assist with the counseling sessions; Individuals can come to this center for a variety of concerns, and when the client isn’t sure what’s coming up for them, the horses always know”.  Throughout the therapy sessions, therapists often assist a client to learn how to communicate with a horse, a large animal they may have never interacted with, which can build their self-esteem and problem-solving skills, which are essential for creating a positive mood and a better self-image.
A Stable Life equine therapy program use horses to facilitate growth and healing because it focuses on the horse as an equal partner to the client. Horses are instinctively in tune with their environment; they react to their physical surroundings and perceive subtle shifts in the participant’s energy, focus, and emotions. With this ground based (non-riding) approach, participants often project their own inner state onto the horses, which mirrors their own emotions, all in a safe environment to help develop new productive patterns. This can facilitate self-awareness in a deep and profound way. During this process, clients are able to open up and reveal themselves in a healing space, observe their own behavior, and with the guidance of Professional Counselors and Equine Specialists, are provided feedback that prompt self-discovery, acceptance, and accountability. The experience becomes a lesson in wellness and connection, allowing many individuals to move forward in the healing therapeutic process.
Established in 2012, A Stable Life has always provided a variety of non-riding equine treatment programs focused on prevention, education, healing and assisted recovery guided by qualified professionals. Today, as a Wellness Center, its intent is to help individuals and families dealing with life challenges such as anxiety, isolation, trauma, and loss of a loved one or a significant life change. Also, A Stable Life is all-inclusive, with specialty programs for children and adults with special needs. A Stable Life will design a program for any person in need of intervention and healing. The grace of a horse enriches the spirit, mind and heart resulting in true healing.  For more information visit: or call 201.336.3370.  All programs take place at the Bergen Equestrian Center at 40 Fort Lee Road, N.J

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