This Valentine’s Day, we need your help.
We need to raise $10,000 for some of our most hefty expenses in 2018 this year: alfalfa deliveries, manure dumpster haul-off, and our medical bills.
There’s a lot to cover in this post, and part of me doesn’t know where to start. The last thing I want is to overwhelm you with information about the current happenings at this ranch or turn this into too much of a novel.
So I want to focus on one thing here. The only thing. The most important thing.
Valentine’s Day is on Wednesday, and as society tells us, it’s a day for which we buy our significant others some sort of frilly red-pink-or-white-themed gift or spend time with good friends raising a glass (or six) to the single life.
Trust me, I worked at Hallmark for several years. I know the shtick.
I also know that Valentine’s Day represents something deeper than obligatory retail mush.
I know its origins stem from sacrifice. From commitment. From devotion.
This – this realness – is not only what our Valentine’s Day is about, it’s what the other 364 days of our year are all about.
Sacrifice. Commitment. Devotion.
And you know what the most amazing thing is?
As much as we put into our horses, they give back everything we put into them. Our horses give love to everyone who walks onto this ranch:
Our volunteers, who come from all walks of life and – like us all – face many challenges while walking their individual paths.
Our friends from Greenway High School, who light up when they spend time with our herd and feel good about completing projects for our ranch.
Our friends from SARRC (the Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center), who now know more about horsemanship than most of the population and savor each moment they get getting their hands dirty.
Our newest friends from Partners in Recovery, who are making enormous strides in their personal paths to independence thanks to the help of our horses.
Our members of Tierra Madre’s horsemanship class, each of whom are learning not just how horses see the world, but how *they* see the world.
Our participants of the equine experiential coaching program, for whom our horses serve as mirrors and a way to look deeper into their every-day actions.
And everyday people who walk into the ranch, unawares, unsuspecting, and see the beauty of our previously abused, neglected, injured, and abandoned horses enjoying their lives and are moved to the depths of their souls.
These horses work magic, just by being themselves.
And we want to keep doing what we’re doing for our community. Right now, though, it’s difficult.
In 2018, we’ve spent roughly $4,225 (I rounded to whole numbers) so far on our herd. See copies of medical bills for exact numbers. (One bill hasn’t come our way yet. Heighten had an emergency colic Thursday night that required us to give him IV fluids as a precaution. Based on past episodes, we estimate this will be around $1,000. We will post that bill when we get it.)
I’ll be honest, as we always try to be: We’ve having a hard time raising that money for medical bills. The month of February is not the greatest in that regard.
This week we’re also planning to get a squeeze of alfalfa (88 bales – that’ll last us about 3 weeks) to the tune of $1,000. We’d like to plan ahead for the next few squeezes and raise $2,000 for those.
Finally, we’ve had four manure removals since the beginning of the year. At $325 each, that comes to $1,300.
This adds to roughly $8,500 ($8,525 to be exact), and we’d like a $1,500 medical emergency cushion so we don’t have to scramble to fundraise when we’re hit with an emergency again.
Our wild, crazy goal for Valentine’s Day.
We’re wild and crazy for doing this, so hell, our goal goes hand in hand with what we do. What our horses do.
What can you do?
$10,000 is a large number, but when you break it down into small chunks, it is totally doable. If 400 people gave $25, we would be golden! All donors who give during our Give Love campaign will be sent a 4×6 picture of one of our horses and a special little thank you from all of us.
2. Buy a T-Shirt
We are selling Give Love t-shirts on Bonfire for $25 each, and a large portion of the sales will go to Tierra Madre! Check them out here: https://www.bonfire.com/give-love-campaign/
3. Become a Sponsor!
You can sponsor your favorite horse at four different levels: Bronze ($25 a month); Silver ($50 a month); Gold ($100 a month); and Diamond ($200 a month). 100% of your monthly donation goes to covering the meals of the horse of your choice! To become a sponsor, go to our donation page, and enter the amount you wish to donate monthly. Then select your horse under “I would like to designate this donation to a specific fund.” Finally, before you hit submit, select “I would like this donation to automatically repeat each month.” You will be sent a 8×10 picture of your horse as well as their bio and a quarterly report card.
4. Become an Ambassador
We are looking for fun and outgoing people to help us with fundraising and doing outreach in the community. This is a really fun gig and we are really excited about it! Join us as we set up tables in North Phoenix, Scottsdale, Cave Creek, and Carefree and talk about our herd to interested passerby. Have a blast hosting fundraisers – both ones that Tierra Madre plans and ones that you want to come up with! Work around YOUR schedule and work with YOUR friends for a cause about which YOU are passionate: our herd.
* You do NOT have to be an official Tierra Madre volunteer to be an ambassador. Family and friends are welcome to join! No orientation necessary. *
We can do this. 10k. Let’s go!