Bridges Retreat Program

a Windows To My Soul Offering

Connecting With Your Resilience

  • Equine Therapy

  • Confidential Counseling

  • Adrenal Fatigue Education

  • Emotional Regulation Workshops

  • Body Work

  • Healthy Meals and Snacks

  • Post Retreat Follow-up Plan With Tools To Be Successful

  • And More!

Bridges Retreats

Connecting With Your Resilience


Windows To My Soul is collaborating with Jill Gustafson, LCSW to deliver retreats for First Responders that address the often overwhelming emotional and psychological symptoms that are a result of protecting and serving as a First Responder.  Exposure to this type of high-stress work environment can take a life-altering toll on First Responders and their families. The goals of these retreats include processing traumatic events, educating participants on the neurobiological effects of long term cumulative exposure to trauma, provide tools and guidance to calm the neurobiological systems, as well as provide experiences that will help participants reconnect to their relationships, communities, and life.

Topics for this retreat include:

  • Depression

  • Anxiety

  • Relationship Problems (focus on spouse and children)

  • Anger

  • Frustration

  • Sleep Problems

  • Administrative Betrayal

  • And Other Issues Associated With Being Involved In One Or MultipleTraumatic Events


Overnight Bridges Retreat


Brainspotting (Used exclusively by Jill Gustafson and others with First Responders during the Carr and Camp fires to process multiple traumatic experiences in a short period of time)



Our overnight Bridges Retreats are held in the beautiful Sierra Foothills at Pleasant Valley Farms in Pleasant Valley. Participants will be staying at a beautiful 6-bedroom private residence in the Sierra Foothills. Mornings will begin with Trauma-Focused Yoga and a hearty healthy breakfast, lunch is catered at the retreat site, and each day will end with a home-style dinner catered at the lodging site, followed by healing meditation.

Shuttle service to the retreat site (approximately 15 minutes away) will be provided.


1-Day Intensive Retreat

The 1-Day Intensive retreat is a trauma-informed education workshop for First Responders, their spouses, partners, and friends.  This is an opportunity to learn about the neurobiological and physiological effects of long-term cumulative exposure to traumatic events and to practice tools that can calm the neurobiological systems.  We call this emotional regulation.   

Contemporary research shows that healthy relationships, meaning good for both, are the agent of change for those striving to overcome the effects of traumatic events.  In this workshop we partner with horses, focusing on relationship with self, family, and community while maintaining a calm regulated state.  

1-Day Intensive Learning Objectives include:

  • Understand regulation and the physical and mental health benefits of living a regulated life

  • Learn tools that can help maintain a calm/regulated state

  • Learn skills that promote healthy, good for both,  relationships

For the 1-Day Intensive, we invite the entire First Responder community, which includes:


Emergency Medical Services

Fire Fighters

Forestry Service

Law Enforcement

Office of Emergency Services

Peer Support Groups/Teams

Search & Rescue

2021 Bridges Retreat Schedule

5-Day Retreats

  • April 22-26, 2021  Application deadline TBD

  • June 6-10, 2021  Application deadline TBD

  • August 1-5, 2021  Application deadline TBD

  • October 17-21, 2021  Application deadline TBD

  • December 2-6, 2021  Application deadline TBD

1-Day Intensives (Open to all First Responders)

  • Available upon request, please contact us for further details and group size requirements. 


If you would like to participate in any of the Bridges retreats, please complete the registration form, scan, and return to The form can also be sent via USPS to: PO Box 608, Mount Aukum, CA 95656. 

Upon receipt, our office will send an intake form for you to then complete and submit.

All applicants will also be interviewed by one of our retreat clinicians; this will provide confirmation for both the participant and the clinician that the retreat will be a good fit.