Welcome to Soul Friends

Animal Assisted Programs of CT

Healing the hearts of children and families one wagging tail at a time



Your donations will help provide essential therapeutic services to Connecticut children who are in need.


Animal assisted therapy is a goal directed intervention in which an animal meeting specific criteria is an integral part of treatment.


Soul Friends is looking for volunteer animal assisted therapy teams to help with program development.

Healing the hearts of children and families one wagging tail at a time


Our mission is to provide innovative clinical and educational programs that promote the healing benefits of the human-animal bond and nature for children, families, young adults, veterans and first responders.


We aspire to be a proactive leader in the human-animal bond field and ecotherapy focusing on our humane approach to animal welfare and well-being for animals participating in therapy by choice and consent; and how honoring and connecting to nature provides opportunities for healing.

“When I look into the eyes of an animal I do not see an animal. I see a living being. I see a friend. I feel a soul” –  Anthony Douglas Williams


Soul Friends mental health professionals and equine specialists have a 20 year history of providing animal assisted psychotherapy and equine assisted leadership with a strong belief in the need for specialized education and mentoring in the incorporating of animals and nature in our work.  Staff members have been trained in eclectic forms of best practices in the human-animal bond including: Pet Partners, EAGALA, PATH International, Natural Lifemanship(™), the International Association of Animal Assisted Play Therapy , HERD, Arenas for Change, Equine EMDR, Anicare Child Model  and the Masterson’s Method.  


Some people talk to animals. Not many listen though. That's the problem.
AA. Milne
Winnie the Pooh

Established since 2003, Soul Friends has provided therapeutic visits to over 10,000 children across the state of Connecticut. Soul Friends has established collaborative relationships with over 25 community agencies statewide, as well as being credentialed by the Department of Children and Families to serve children in need. Kate Nicoll, the founder, has presented at national and international conferences on our work and mission. We believe our mission of hope will comfort children in need

Soul Friends’ staff partner with our working therapy animals to help children reach goals, to change behavior and experience hope. We believe in the stories of hope in healing of the human-animal bond – and we are committed to demonstrate continually our effectiveness through research efforts. 

Programs and Services

Interactive Individual Psychotherapy


Individual, family and group psychotherapy for children, families and adults providing comprehensive mental health services with a strong belief in the healing connection of the human-animal bond and nature.  Trauma and attachment informed mental health care incorporating best practices such as play therapy. CBT and EMDR.  Compassionate, accepting and supportive counseling. 


Horses Inspire

"the Horses Inspire program I participated in with my mom, a first responder, broke the chain of 3 of 4 generations of trauma in 6 sessions" - teen participant


Equine Assisted Psychotherapy and Equine Assisted Learning and Leadership program in four locations across CT. Providing individual, family and group therapy and/or social skills and learning with the consent of horses and other therapeutic farm animals. 

Our Soul Friends equine therapy group for teen girls has demonstrated positive improvement in self-esteem and sense of hopefulness.  Soul Friends also created the FIRST IN THE COUNTRY equine assisted therapy curriculum  for improved relationship and communication building for veteran, military and first responder families, this curriculum which incorporates  an evidenced based parent-relationship therapy has shown to improve connection in their relationship. 

Come, Follow Me!

"Be kind to everything that lives" - a Native American proverb


A 6 session group therapy program of dog training and social skills building.  Participants have individual goals that can easily be part of an individualized educational plan.  18 year history of serving thousands across CT in collaboration with community agencies, schools and youth service bureaus .  Positive outcome measures and research projects presented at national conferences with demonstrated increased body awareness.  Outcomes in collaboration with MSW students at Southern CT State University and a medical student  at Quinnipiac  University.   

Healing Hearts

"Beginning the recovery process for relational neglect can start with animals" Dr. Bruce Perry


An 8 session trauma and attachment informed psychotherapy group based on the narrative lives of animals exploring their strengths, struggles and personality and how it impacts connections and normalizes responses to loss, stress and transitions. 

A 20 year history of serving thousands across CT in collaboration with residential facilities, community agencies, group homes and as part of trauma initiatives in several school systems.  Pilot research program with Southern CT State University Department of Public Health demonstrated increased empathy scores and positive trends in peer relationships.  Research project with University of Hartford psychology intern presented at the APA conference in 2008.

News & Updates

Team Soul Friends

Soul Friends Board

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