About Wellness Achieved Through Evidenced-based Recreational Services (WATERS)

Our goal at W.A.T.E.R.S., Org. is to provide mental health education and training to veterans, VA personnel, community mental health providers, occupational therapists, and non-profit volunteers. This training will enhance the skills they need to address the needs of veterans and active duty service personnel with disabilities. This training will create greater expertise in mental health first aid, which many veterans, including those with PTSD, TBI, and substance use, need.

Based on our experiences over the past several years, the relationships that develop among the participants, volunteers and VA staff have encouraged and supported veterans to become involved in a non-threatening, non-competitive community activities. In contrast to the traumatic experiences of warfare, recreational activities, such as kayaking, rock climbing and fly fishing, create a calming and healing situation while pursuing a goal which releases the trauma victim from the immediacy of the symptoms of PTSD, TBI and other emotional/mental issues.


A desire to have a positive impact on helping veterans or active duty service members who have a need or desire for recreational activities as part of their recovery from PTS, TBI or other disabilities or physical and emotional issues. The community based organizations that offer these activities are predominantly staffed by well-meaning volunteers who typically have little or no training in PTSD, TBI, other disabilities and the complexity of the issues that flow from these situations. In addition, veterans, VA personnel, community mental health providers, occupational therapists, and other health care professionals and therapists are not up to date on the latest research and findings in this area of healing. As such, training in this area of health care and the effectiveness of evidence-based recreational healing is imperative.

Services Provided

  • Family Programs
  • Hunting and Fishing
  • Therapeutic Retreats
Population Served
  • Active Duty
  • Caretakers
  • Children
  • Families of the Fallen
  • Men
  • Spouses
  • Veterans
  • Women