A friend introduced me to this incredible organization nearly a year ago and I am forever indebted to her and the organization! Patricia and other staff members helped me understand the depression and PTSD of the military sexual trauma I'd experienced and started the healing process I desperately needed.To continue my healing and help others do the same, I have volunteered for many of the program's supported by Patricia and the Starfish Foundation and find them to have impeccable integrity, compassion and a true gift for helping people deal with the toughest of situations with excellence and elegance!Because of my involvement with this organization, I am finding new joy every day and the courage to live life fully!
I am a volunteer and I have never seen such a beautiful foundation to be a part of! I volunteer for healing warrior hearts. I got involved when my mom (a marines vet) and my dad( a navy vet) both volunteered to find themselves after some terrible events that occurred in their lives. I must say they are completely different people now, and we all volunteer! Not to mention my grand parents also attended the couples weekend and they loved it too! Multiple lives changed, and multiple friends gained!
There is something incredibly magical about the Starfish Foundation. I attended my first Healing Warrior Hearts retreat (sponsored by the Starfish Foundation) in September of 2014, as a U.S. Air Force Veteran with military sexual trauma and a service-connected disability for trauma and anxiety. Before I attended this retreat, I walked through life with huge walls around myself, afraid that I would be hurt again. Since attending that first retreat, I've attended several retreats through the Center for Creative Learning, both as a participant and as a volunteer staff member. The Starfish Foundation provided a full scholarship for that first retreat and authorized my request for partial scholarships for two civilian retreats. I drive 700 miles round-trip on my own dime in order to stay connected to the programs which are supported by the Starfish Foundation because I believe in the work that we do on these retreats. We provide a safe space for emotional healing. We help people learn how to love and to be loved. We save lives, one beautiful starfish at a time.
It has been an honor to volunteer for the Healing Warrior Hearts program. The program, developed and run by Patricia Clason, is so well organized and effective in transforming the wounded spirit. To see the transformation the veterans go through from the start of the retreat to the end is phenomenally rewarding. Walking in, their spirits are low and their hearts are guarded. By the end of the weekend, they have bright eyes and smiles and their joy is palpable. It's been such a rewarding experience for me to give back in this way to those who have sacrificed so much to serve this great country of ours.
My mother and father are both Veterans and I was able to spend time volunteering as Staff to provide healing to people who have had the same experiences as my parents. It has helped me to gain insight into the environment that I was raised in and the similarities between other Veterans with PTSD and my Mom. This has helped me to understand myself and other people. Consider attending a Retreat. I have a very loving second family there
I met Patricia Clason in October 2015 after being referred by my therapist to Taking It Lightly, with the hope that I would begin my journey of finding peace after being a victim of repeated childhood abuses. I was extremely nervous to attend the retreat; however, it wasn’t long before it became clear how much Patricia and her staff sincerely cared about the participants and the process. They provided a safe, confidential environment for me and the others to share our stories. I quickly felt immersed in a powerful energy of love, understanding, and patience. I left that weekend with courage and hope that the grief and shame that plagued my life could fade, and that healing was possible. Patricia is an amazing person who truly makes a difference in our community every day. The Starfish Foundation has helped hundreds of individuals, including veterans, through the Healing Warrior Hearts program, find hope, joy, and peace. Healing is a process, and now I truly believe I am worthy of the effort. As a result of my experience, I am honored to staff weekend retreats in order that I might help others find healing and hope too! Kudos and love to Patricia and the many volunteers who work tirelessly to make these retreats, and healing, possible!
I have had the honor of being a volunteer for Healing Warrior Hearts and a witness to the program, designed specifically for veterans and the issues that they face. I have seen many veterans wholeheartedly speak of the quality of this program & I have seen it for myself. I am touched beyond words to have played my small part in what takes place to serve those who have Served.
Had it not been for the Starfish Foundation, I would not been able to experience the Taking It Lightly weekend. This resource was vital for me to experience personal and professional growth in my life. It provided me with essential maintenance for my life & I am so eternally grateful.
I am a Veteran and a mental health service provider who became acquainted with this organization through professional avenues. I went into it with the intention of staffing a weekend. Within the first few hours with the participants, I realized I was similar to them and had a need for further healing. I decided to participate that weekend instead of staffing. The weekend retreat was an incredible emotional release of pain that has been building up over the decades. I learned more about myself in one weekend then I have in months of counseling. Besides the emotional healing, I was connected to an incredible support system and a fantastic mentor. In fact, it has been two years since my retreat weekend and I continue to stay involved in Healing Warrior Hearts through volunteering at events and staffing other weekend retreats. I am about to complete my Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology with several years of experience with trauma treatment. This organization's work is comparable to anything I have seen!!
I was introduced to the Starfish foundation after volunteering for Healing Warrior Hearts in 2015. I was at a turbulent point in my life, and all of the amazing volunteers and programs the foundation offers have been life-changing. There is a sense of not just community, but family. I was able to participate in Renewal- A weekend of healing for sexual trauma victims. The Starfish foundation paid for the course, since I am not in a good financial situation. Thanks to the help of the Starfish foundation and the Center for Creative Learning, I feel more "me" than I even knew was possible. I have been given a new sense of hope and fallen madly in love with life, and learned to love myself. Lives are forever changed thanks to the foundation.
This organization changed my life and the trajectory of my legacy. The burdens I was carrying from trauma I had experienced was spilling over onto my family. While volunteering for this organization I have learned how to open my heart and experience love again. I thank you, my wife thanks you, and my children thank you. Kelly
I talked my dad into participating after talking with Anthony Luna about his family’s experience. Dad went reluctantly as it seems every vet does. I had no expectations when I went to the graduation on Sunday, but I saw a different man. He had a skip in his step and a twinkle in his eye that I had never seen before. He has not stopped thanking me for talking him into participating. Since then I have volunteered to staff weekends. I can’t put into words the changes I have experienced and the difference it has made in our relationship. Vets Journey Home has done so much for our family. I wish this program would have been available when dad returned from Viet Nam. I pray that every vet has the opportunity to experience this program. The wounds of combat affect the entire family no matter how hard you try to protect them. Healing the wound is the only way to stop the hurting.
The Starfish Foundation has been a great positive influence on my life for more than 20 years. Its Bamboo Bridge program saved my life in 1993. I support the foundation and its programs like Healing Warrior Hearts with my money and volunteer efforts. I highly recommend others to do the same.
I have volunteered for this organizations work with veterans several times. The difference between the person who arrives and the person who leaves must be seen to be believed. This work is crucial to our veterans who have suffered much and been given little.
I staffed a VJH seminar for the first time last weekend. I did not really know what to expect. What I found was a safe and loving environment where each veteran was allowed to take as much time as he or she needed to tell his or her story in its entirety. Then each veteran was allowed to do a piece of work to help heal one or more wounds created as a result of his or her time in service. The transformations I saw on that weekend were truly amazing. I will staff again as soon as possible.
If it has not been for the Starfish Foundation I would not have been able to attend in Taking It Lightly as well as Taking It Lightly Renewal. This has changed my life and made me realize so much old habits. I got a new attitude and it's shinning bright. I got new habits and I make a difference because someone cared enough to put me back in the ocean. I may have experienced what I did, I am who I am, where I am today because of all of that. This doesn't define me anymore. Amen.
Have been serving combat vets for many years and in many ways. I have witnessed life changing experiences during warrior heart retreats. Volunteering to spend time with the veterans staff and facilitators is a energy and spirit lifting journey! Joining us for a weekend, as a participant or staff will change you too.
I attended the Healing Warrior Hearts MST weekend as a Volunteer to assist veterans in dealing with military sexual trauma. I am a Master Level Social Worker and a military wife/mother and have been working several years on my own healing. This weekend was AMAZING. Participants walked into the weekend with sad and broken spirits. They left revived and with great thankfulness. This was my first experience with this organization and I was truly impressed. I appreciated the dedication of the staff and the expertise of the instructors. Everything was explained forthright so the participants knew what was happening next. The staff worked tirelessly supporting the group and the instructors kept the volunteers well informed. It was incredible to watch the loving care and respect that was given to our hurting military men and women. I highly recommend this organization to anyone who is looking for personal growth and healing. As a volunteer, I was renewed by the end of the weekend, learned so much about the helping profession, and rejoiced with the many people who were uplifted! Thank you Patricia and staff for allowing me to participate in this incredible weekend.
In the Healing Warrior Hearts program, Veterans are offered the opportunity to heal military-related wounds of the heart, mind and soul. There is not one veteran who serves our country and comes back unchanged, unsoiled, unaffected by all they see and do. Sadly there arent many resources for our vets to have such closure and an opportunity to begin and/or take another step toward integrating in society, their families, and the workforce. I'm very excited that Healing Warrior Hearts is available, free of charge, to aid our proud service men and women in gathering the pieces of the "self" and becoming whole once again.
As a volunteer staff person for Healing Warrior Hearts, I am honored beyond words to be able to give back, just a little, to those who have fought and ensured our freedom. The amount of healing I've witnessed in this program is wonderfully overwhelming.... like that feeling a person may get when the room is filled with love, gratitude, joy and celebration!
I not only volunteer but have completed several of the weekend intensive workshops, as well as the one-day events. The peace, joy, and contentment I have been searching my entire life for was revealed! The secret? I had it all along! I just had to give myself permission, forgive myself and others, and (most of all!!) empower myself!
Through the help of The Starfish Foundation sponsored programs, I have filled my "tool box" with resources for self-confidence, self-live, and am on my continual journey in finding what gifts I can contribute to my community, my world.
I began my journey to emotional freedom from the stress and baggage that i carry for combat and my military service by attending Healing Warrior Hearts retreat. The program was such a success in the changes that it made in me that I could tell and others that I had interacted with could also, some people say;" Wow this is amazing you are a changed Man". From this I have chosen and decided that Healing Warrior Hearts is to much for me to not share that I share it with all veterans combat and not. I have continued to support and participate in many weekends to support fellow veterans as they progress through their own quest/ journey, by volunteering to staff weekends and spread the word. This program has helped me to overcome so much and along that to see others also overcome many challenges that we believed were going to be impossible to get past with out the power, caring, professionalism, and excellence of all that I have met since this transformation.
I attended my first "Taking It Lightly" weekend in January of 2012. It was an incredible, powerful weekend filled with love and compassion. Because of that weekend, I now live my life more alive and aware of my own feelings and I have more compassion for others. I have been volunteering by staffing weekends and participating in fund raising events because this work is so important to keep going and healing peoples hearts!
I first attended "Taking It Lightly" 22 years ago. The program was a life changer for me. I was divorcing at the time and felt lost, alone and my world was up side down. I got so much from the program that I wanted to give back my time because there were many volunteer staff there for me. I have been a part of over 50 weekends because volunteering helps me grow emotionally as much as being supportive of the new attendees. I felt safe to tell my story and I was accepted. I learned that I can safely express my emotions and voice my needs. I learned to find safe people.
The Starfish Foundation is a truly wonderful organization that supports individuals to do emotional healing working which is very powerful and life changing. It changed my life for the better! Many other people have benefitted as well! Thank you Starfish Foundation for the work that you do!