What We Do
The R I D E Foundation was formed to help people and horses. A family friend, Russel, was the first person Sarah helped who had been diagnosed with PTSD. Through the healing power of working with horses, Russell was able to learn to control his emotions in order to gain the horses trust. Once Sarah realized she could help people with emotional trauma by working through it with wild horses, she set out to find work with someone who was doing this exact thing. To her surprise, there wasn't anyone at the time doing this in our area. She wanted to work with horses, with her daughter by her side, raising her in a positive environment, with a job she could be proud of.
Sarah started the paperwork for a non-profit in 2015. We were incorporated in 2017, and the R I D E Foundation was born. In the beginning, there was one horse, Hobby, and in July 2016, she went to a holding facility in Ridgecrest, CA and brought home the first BLM Sales Authority mustang, Monroe. At that time, participants were also volunteering. We worked with a firefighter, a veteran who had returned from Afghanistan and his girlfriend, as well as a woman who was in an abusive relationship for more than five years. Today, we care for 14 horses with many various animals at the ranch. We are at capacity for the property we are on at this time. We have about a dozen volunteers we can call on to help us out, besides our team members.
The plan for R I D E in the coming years is to prove our concept and horsemanship curriculum to obtain the funding to buy our own ranch to grow and help more people and horses.
The RIDE Foundation helps those with emotional trauma through the gentling process of at risk, wild horses from the Bureau of Land Management. When the mustangs first arrive, Sarah, our founder and CEO, gentles them down enough so that they are no longer dangerous. Once this has been achieved, Sarah invites program participants into the round pen to work with the mustangs.
Mustangs are much more sensitive to things like body position, breathing, tone, etc than domesticated horses. This allow us to teach participants a wide variety of skills including non verbal communication, leadership, relationship building, and more that they can transfer into their daily lives.
All mustangs start in our adult programs. Once they have graduated from these programs, they transfer into our youth programs. The length of time that this takes, depends solely on the horse and we do not rush this process for the horses or our participants. Many participants continue to come back year after year as they become attached to the horses and they enjoy learning what the horses teach them about themselves. The key to this process is to allow participants and horses the time that they need to be successful.
Once our mustangs have gone through all of our programs, our goal is to always find them a forever home.
*Reminder: We are not a horse rescue. We only adopt our horses from the BLM's Sales Authority List.*