It’s been a long, hot, dry, summer recently. Seems hard to get excited about much. But I finally found my inspiration last month when I discovered this place.
“This place” is a brand-new horse rescue operation just a few minutes from my home in Napa County, a nascent operation I visited a few weeks ago to see how I could help. I am a horse lover. The smell of manure makes me happy, brings me home. You see, as a child I fell in love with horses, rode many times a week beginning when I was 7 years old. I rode a breed called American Saddle Bred and they are considered “hot,” which means they like to act sorta silly and bucky. Probably from inbreeding. Anyway, I took lessons and got thrown maybe twice a month, landing on my ass or a few times on my head. But it didn’t matter. I loved it, lived for it. So as a grownup, and with the kids grown and grandkids close, but not my responsibility, I find I have more free time on my hands.
And magically, my stars have aligned! Horse Rescue at the Grove (www.horserescueatthegrove.com) is a 501 C3 nonprofit, home of horses that have been abused by their owners, many entering the facility malnourished and depressed. The equine fellas and gals at the rescues operation now are beautiful and while they may have some PTSD, most are really sweet and thankful for food, exercise and attention/petting. They are now available for adoption with donations going to monthly upkeep and care for the wards.
After I met with the proprietress, Antonella a few times, I realized that my role here would not be mucking stalls, although I would do that. What I saw immediately was that I could put my business development skills to work here. It’s what I do, helping new businesses develop plans to realize their goals. In this case, the operation really needs pre-development funding to improve the facility, to secure donations to support the rescues (that now number 7), and to craft a plan to become financially sustainable. It’s what I do, what I’ve done for the last 30 years.
The mission of the organization is to provide a loving home and safe haven for abused horses. But besides caring for the horses, a program for at-risk and abused children to ride and care for the horses is also provided.
Plans for the future include raising capital to buy and develop a bigger and better ranch, add space for more horses, offer a summer day camp for local at-risk youth, and become financially self-sufficient though donations and earned revenue.
Let us know if /how you lost and found your passion/inspiration. Or what you’re doing to make yourself feel better in these extremely trying times!
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