The days start early at Double R Ranch, a working horse ranch where men, women and children who have been abused or abandoned, have a unique opportunity to work with animals. There are goats to be fed, eggs to be retrieved, pigs to be slopped and horses to be brushed. This amazing facility helps build self-esteem and gives its residents a safe place to learn how to care for others.
I had a brief experience with horses before but nothing like I know now. I know I’m able to talk with these horses without putting up a front or being someone I’m not. I did a lot of horse shows and got blue and red ribbons. I can ride in the backcountry on the back of an Arabian. I learned a lot and got to share what I learned with families and kids. I had this one kid who didn’t want anything to do with the horses. After eight months of working with him, he loved them. I’d been estranged from my sister for seven years and from my daughter for 17 years. I wasn’t a good father or a provider. I was a heroin addict. Now my daughter’s in my life and I talk to her twice a week. I talk to my sister once a week. I have a great life. I’m in the Alcohol & Drug Studies program at Palomar Community College and I’m working in a recovery program in San Clemente. God has blessed me and it’s all because of the people at the Rescue Mission with big hearts.
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