SHOSHONE — Hiatus Ranch will be a place for combat veterans to seek treatment mentally, physically, and emotionally. Owner Joshua Burnside, a combat veteran himself, feels that the wide-open space and ability to tend to his vast majority of animals is a great way for veterans to heal.
However, before this rehabilitation program becomes a reality, there is still plenty of work that needs to be done. To help to try and secure much-needed funds, Burnside has decided to host the Ranch's first-ever silent auction.
After several months of planning and donations made by individuals and organizations, the auction is well underway. “Probably 60% of the products we have on there are from other veterans and small businesses that have donated their items for us to be able to raise funds,” said Burnside.
Numerous products have been donated ranging from pictures, picture frames, jewelry, clothing, and even flags. Once the auction is over, all proceeds will go right back into the ranch to help achieve Josh's dream of providing this unique space.
Burnside said, “We still need to purchase the horses and some of the livestock. We’re working on doing the interior fencing now on the property now and fixing up a couple more of the buildings.”
Some progress has already been made, a new barn has been built and some of the living quarters for veterans are ready. However, money is still needed for the ranch's first-year operating budget which is $275,000. This money will be used to help try and get veterans to the ranch, provide them with meals, having full-time staff, electricity, and also equipment to maintain the animals.
The auction is open to anyone and can be accessed through the Hiatus Ranch Website. Donations are also still being accepted for items to be auctioned off. For anyone interested in contributing products, they simply have to reach out.
“They can reach out to us either through a telephone number, email or through a social media site. We’re available through all of those platforms, just whatever is convenient for anybody else,” said Burnside.
Amy Boyer met Burnside when she had to give her dog away and Burnside gladly accepted the dog as his own. She is thrilled to have had the ability to donate to the auction and is still motivated to help Josh in the future.
“Whether it’s us helping him in his goals or just helping to put him in touch with other people that maybe could provide services or do things that would be helpful to the cause,” said Boyer.
As Hiatus Ranch edges closer to its hopeful fall launch date, Burnside and his crew are hopeful there is more support out there.
Bonnie Mcbride, a board member for the ranch, maybe just as enthusiastic about this project as Josh, especially regarding their history. Mcbride worked with a group in the Wood River Valley that helped treat veterans and Josh was among her first group and helped teach him to ride a horse.
“It’s going to put the word out that we’re there, we are getting started and there is going to be a program. This is not just a pipe dream and hopefully, they’ll see us get it started and continue to donate,” said Mcbride.
The auction will be running until Monday, March 15th.