About Sweetbeau Horses Our Story
It was October of 2016 when Patricia Griffin-Soffel heard about an urgent wild mustang rescue operation in South Dakota. A once successful rescue had suffered problems over their 17 years, but worst of all they put no controls over breeding. Now the horses were reportedly dying from starvation and neglect. A once manageable herd grew from 500 to 900 with predictable consequences. https://returntofreedom.org/a-driving-force-for-hope-behind-900-horse-rescue-griffin-soffel-joins-rtf-in-conservation-effort/ Becoming aware of this tragedy, forever changed Griffin-Soffel’s future. When she was told the fate of these horses was to be sold at auction to kill buyers, it was not an acceptable solution for her. She and her husband, Michael Soffel, knew they had to change the course of the journey for these horses, and therefore became the foundational financial contributors to the efforts that changed not only the fate of the horses, but the lifetime purpose of this couple.
Patricia and Michael had sold their Silicon Valley tech-enabled services company just a year earlier and now were among the first to bring significant funds to the rescue effort. With little experience in the horse rescue world, Patricia was fortunate to find an experienced and successful ally to work with. Neda DeMayo, founder of Return to Freedom, was fluent in the language of rescuing horses. This instant team pledged that no horse would be left behind. When they stepped forward with a real financial commitment and a plan that made sense, it got the attention of the ASPCA, The Humane Society of the United States, and other private parties who matched some of the funds. Griffin-Soffel’s substantial contribution to this project helped enable the launch of the largest successful rescue in the country to date. A necessary lawsuit successfully took title of the horses and put them in the very capable hands of Elaine Nash, founder of Fleet of Angels, who rallied a team of volunteers and dedicated over a year of her life to adopt out every horse.
This experience opened Griffin-Soffel’s eyes to the unthinkable possibility of the American mustang becoming extinct in just a few short decades. With the BLM’s aggressive new roundup schedules and ignoring the laws that provide federal protection to these national icons of America, something needed to be done.
Patricia and Michael, founded Sweetbeau Horses in March of 2017 to begin a rescue and training operation for wild mustangs. Starting with 25 of the rescued herd, they launched their 501 c 3 organization in Paso Robles, CA. These mustangs are being trained for adoption and are again finding their joy. “There is gratitude in the eyes of every horse that came to us for a new chance at happiness, and we won’t let them down” says Griffin-Soffel.
This non-profit is dedicated to saving and training our nations wild mustangs and finding forever homes in the domestic world.
In addition, Sweetbeau will continue to be an active advocate by generating awareness, education, training programs and adoptions to help wild horses thrive in a domestic environment. The long-range goal for Sweetbeau Horses has always included equine therapy and retreat for PTSD victims and we hope to have this up and operational in 2020.
TAX I.D. # 82-1190590