WEST KELOWNA - Silverado Socrates, the owner of the foreclosed Mandy and Me Trailriding, says her first priority is securing good homes for her animals then she will decide what her next step will be.
“I don’t think they can just kick me out,” Socrates says. “They can’t touch anything here until Dec. 4. In that period of time I’m going to get out anything of value while trying to raise the money to potentially make an offer to buy (the new owner) out. I’m hoping that if I have $20,000 on top of the $15,000, he’d be open to it. Especially if we have a petition of community support from neighbours and other people.”
Socrates says she is in the process of setting up a petition to try and keep her five-acre farm on Patterson Road where she has lived for more than three decades. In that time she has raised or rescued 15 horses, two dogs and a pig.
“My plan right now is to find individual homes for the horses,” she says.
One horse, Magic, is likely going to Okanagan Equine for a few weeks then he may go to a home in East Kelowna. Socrates will be responsible for paying board fees and hay, money she hopes to raise through a GoFundMe page a friend set up for her last week. A farm in Merritt has agreed to take two more of her horses free of charge. What will happen to the other dozen horses is yet to be decided.
“I’m not worried about any of them,” she says. “One horse, one day at a time.”
Socrates maintains hope that after the deadline to vacate passes on Dec. 5, she will somehow be able to stay.
“Honestly I’m planning to stay in the house,” she says. “Part of my problem is people (who) wouldn’t leave and people wouldn’t pay me so what’s going to happen if I do that?”
Socrates still hasn’t met with the new owner of her farm, who she believes intends to begin developing or renovating right away. She says she is going to wait and see what her options are at the end of the month. Her GoFundMe has raised $2,480 in six days. She says she needs at least $30,000 to make an offer to the new buyer.
“I don’t have anything to offer him at this point,” she says. “Realistically I need to have $15,000 to make up the bid difference plus whatever he wants on top of that for the hassle. I don’t even know if he’s open to that. He probably knows he’s got me over a barrel and I don’t know what kind of person he is at all.”
Socrates recently learned of a donation of $1,500 from one anonymous benefactor, so she is feeling optimistic the community she has spent her life trying to help will come to her rescue.
“It’s awesome to feel this support,” she says. “I’m absolutely happy with very little I just want to share it. That’s what makes this so insane.”
Socrates is, in the meantime, reaching out to the community for anyone willing to take some of her horses for either the short- or long-term. Her pig, Sookie, a two-year-old potbelly, is also in need of a good home.
“She really needs to be spayed before she can go anywhere,” she says. “She kind of goes crazy once a month so she might do better if there’s another potbelly pig around.”
Socrates says that like Sookie, the change that is approaching is going to be a challenge to adapt to.
“She’s gotten used to this area. I don’t have a gate but she knows her boundaries. It’s familiar to her. She’s happy here.”
If you are able to help Socrates with any of her animal care needs, you can email her here. To make a donation visit her GoFundMe page.
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