Today we have author Connie Johnson Hambley who describes how horses and volunteer work shaped her story Giving Voice.
I was one of a handful of volunteers to receive additional training. Not for handling a horse, but for learning how to interact with new clients. The clients were survivors of human trafficking, and the training shattered my perception of the who, what, where and how of this horrific crime. The women came from small towns in the U.S., not some third world country. They were entrapped in lives we may have seen as they scrubbed offices late at night or cared for babies during the day. The less visible women tended needs and lived lives we don't want to imagine.
But, as a thriller author, my mind goes there.
I was witness to women regaining a sense of personal power as they learned to interact with an animal ten times their size. I was instructed not to touch the women, as they had been touched far too many times without their consent. I watched as the horses accepted them for who they were in that moment without judgement. I witnessed women learning to accept themselves as beautiful and strong. And they began the long journey of forgiving themselves.
Giving Voice is inspired by each woman, but not based on any one story. It is dedicated to the women of Amirah and the humans and horses of Windrush Farm.
To learn more about Connie Johnson Hambley visit her website at www.conniejohnsonhambley.com.