Florida horse rescue farm needs community help as property sale looms

A horse rescue farm is hoping the community can come together to help buy its farm.

Hidden Acres Rescue for Thoroughbreds (HART), Cocoa, Florida, helps rescue retired or injured horses. It also helps save horses from being slaughtered.

Earlier this year, property owner Donna Manfredi let the non-profit know she had intentions of selling the property. Manfredi told FOX 35 News she bought the property several years ago with some of her own retirement money because the previous owner couldn't financially keep up. Manfredi said, at 72 years old, it's time to retire.

The non-profit not only helps injured horses, but it also helps the community. Dawn Krout, who is the current president of the non-profit, said people from all walks of life come to the horse farm and volunteer, but the volunteers also benefit largely too.


"We have kids all levels of the autism spectrum, we have kids that come in that have been bullied at school because they're different, or don't fit in, we have families of foster kids come and bond. We have veterans that come in that might have been lost and kind of lost their purpose in life, they come here, and they see these rescues that also have career-ending injuries. Every life has inherent value, so we believe that strongly," Krout said.

Krout has been volunteering there for two years now. She said she doesn't want to think about what it would be like to not have HART in the community. She said she is truly hoping for a miracle.

"We just feel like, we're here for the long haul, we really feel that way. We're going to find the right partner, or we're going to have the community come together to help us purchase this land," Krout said.

Manfredi hopes whoever the buyer, they will keep the mission alive and continue to help horses. Manfredi said the property is listed at $650,000 and the non-profit will have a 60-day notice if they have to leave.