There has been some new and exciting development with the ministry. Here is some background into my decision plus our progress as of the end of 2017.
About 3 years ago, I started reading a fictional faith-based novel series called The Prairie Heritage Series written by Vikki Kestell. (I highly recommend the book series. Here is the link:http://www.vikkikestell.com/3401/3452.html )
This novel series created a huge passion in me for sex trafficking victims. In addition, during the elections, I learned about the terrible pedophile issue in our government and elitists.....and the thousands upon thousands of children victims. There are so many Youtubes on this subject that I watch and continue to watch. President Trump is highly aware of this universal/global problem. I was praying about how our ministry could help these victims once freed. I also became aware of a Veterans group called Vets 4 Child Rescue (vets4childrescue.org) who are helping capture the pedophiles. Not to mention on the news, they had the LA sheriff department press conference after catching like 1000 pedophiles and an old boyfriend from college 40 years ago in NJ was in that briefing 😯 He's a captain for the LA DA. Really weird that I saw him. I don't believe in mere coincidences. The Lord then reminded me during some quiet time of a participant named Deanna Kiester who introduced me to a member of EAGALA (Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association) who wanted to have a counseling session using our horses at Gene's probably 7 years ago, which we ended up doing. So I looked into the EAGALA program again. This program is global, highly respected and regarded in the equine therapy industry. The organization also works with corporations in Equine Assisted Learning. The best part about EAGALA is that it is ground work only. No riding!! https://www.eagala.org/
I sent a text to Deanna asking for the name of the woman who did the session with us. She gave it to me but was also curious and asked why. I told her my desire to diversify. She wrote back saying she was now EAGALA certified and she had interned with sex trafficking victims. I had never mentioned to her about my new sex trafficking victim passion. We have now joined forces with her newly created organization AZ Equine Connection. 50% of her proceeds will be donated to the ministry for the use of our horses and facility. Her website is www.theAZEquineconnection.com. We planned and executed a trial run which we called a Focus Group in order to take pictures of the activities for her website. Below are pictures of the event taken by my wonderful volunteer, Dawn. I am super excited about this new venture and thankful to the Lord for leading me to it so not only can I participate in using the horses to help in the healing of the traumatized, but to also receive some much needed donation money.
We had a great time at horse camp this year. A few challenges presented itself such as my truck breaking down just when I got there for the 2nd trip. My son Keith was right there to rescue me off the road. We had to get a rental truck to tow us home. We were unable to hire Tom this year to haul for us, so we had to make 2 trips. Mark helped tow us home on Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning and then came back up for the last trip. We brought 16 horses to camp. Mina wasn’t ready to go yet. She stayed home with her mom. We also discovered that we have two chefs in the ministry, Jennifer and Jim. I’m thinking of a strategy for them to help out with that in 2018. Overall, the camp was very blessed time and extremely rewarding. Camp is always an answer to prayer and we always overcome.
We had a struggle with Sadie (aka Sister) in 2017. Her organs just started to shut down. She was a trooper while we had her though. She was 25 when we got her so, therefore, she was about 27 when we put her to sleep. She had a great loving rest of her life with us. The Sebright’s did everything they could to keep her alive, but she was just in too much discomfort and we think she was loosing her eye sight as well.
We found a stud, El Costa Prom, who is owned by "Outlaw Annie" for Breehia. Annie is a world champion mounted shooter and rode Costa for her competitions. We bred Breehia and Costa a few times doing a live cover in 2017, but were unsuccessful in getting her pregnant. The vet determined that she has a bladder blockage which makes it difficult for the stud to penetrate and physically hard on Breehia which means we now have to artificially inseminate her in 2018 for a 2019 foal. We will still use Costa, just not the natural way.
We received a donation of Tie; a very pretty quarter horse/paint gelding; 14 years old. He is great under saddle but a little bit of a challenge on the ground. Once he gets passed his ground manner issues, he’ll be a great horse for us all around.
We had an American Heritage Girls Troop come out to visit the ministry in October. They were able to help them perform their community service requirement for that month plus they were able to achieve their Horsemanship Badge through a Horsemanship Education Workshop that we provided. We were very happy to have been able to help them out. Pictures of the event are below.
Mina’s training is going great. Crystal has ridden her many times in the round pen, ovals and on trails. Her confidence is really increasing. She is going to be an exceptional horse. I included a 13 minute video of Mina's 1st rides!!!
I will include the 2017 Christmas pictures here as well.
All of our horses are really working out great and are super healthy, thanks to the Sebright’s ..... plus we have had a few new families start in 2017. Great additions to the ministry.
The AZ Equine Connection Focus Group Event
Costa, Annie and Breehia