We had the good fortune of connecting with Sasha Camacho and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Sasha, what do you attribute your success to?
It’s actually quite simple: putting others before self. We started SoléAna Stables because of our daughter Solana and her love of horses. There weren’t any reputable therapeutic riding programs in our area and we knew if it could help her get stronger, both physically and mentally, it could help others as well. From the beginning we wanted to ensure each lesson focused on our Riders and their personal goals. We listened carefully and implemented fun ways to achieve goals that would make a difference in their lives, not only in the arena, but at school, home and work. It has always been about finding ways that help our Riders become the very best version of themselves. People can have a great idea, but if it becomes about what THEY can accomplish and how successful THEY can become, they lose the reason we were created. We were all created to serve others with love, compassion and joy. For us it has never been about our accomplishments or our legacy, but rather the legacy of our Riders. My daily prayer is that our program is enriching the lives of our very special Riders & their families, and gives them the opportunity to leave their own stamp on the world. We want them to make an impact that goes beyond their differences, and encourages other people to serve others and make a difference.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I was not your typical little girl that wanted a pony for her birthday. I grew up with dreams of living in a big city, with my husband, six kids, and Gansito (my little dachshund). If you told me, I’d be spending my time around horses, wearing cowboy boots and only have two children, I would have laughed uncontrollably! I mean I had it all figured out. My plan was perfect. But it’s funny how we can all make plans and God turns around and says, “…For I know the plans I have for you.” Starting a therapeutic riding program is not for the faint at heart. The first two years were spent figuring out how to start the program. What did we need? Who had a reputable program that we could learn from? How would we even start? Where do we find horses? There were so many questions and hurdles at the beginning, but through it all God was there, leading the way and asking us to trust Him. Now that we are up and running I spend my days at the barn with our Riders & their families, planning fundrasising events, speaking with parents that want their children to be a a part of our program, meeting great people in our community that believe in our program and want to find ways to further support our mission and searching for that perfect piece of property for our future home. My days are long, but so rewarding.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I would definitely take them to the Hill Country! First stop would be Hruska’s Store & Bakery in Ellinger for a kolache (both sweet and salty). We’d drive a few more miles and make our first Buc-ee’s stop in Bastrop. I mean you can’t come to Texas and not set foot in Buc-ee’s, what I lovingly describe as a “high end convenience store that happens to sell petroleum based products.” I’d then head to Austin for some great food at Valentina’s Food Truck, hot coffee at Coffee Traders and then some shopping on Congress. Stay a few nights and maybe float the river, see the bats at night and go hiking in the hills. Next would be San Antonio for a few nights with my first stop being Mi Tierra. Can you tell I plan my trips around where I am going to eat?! Then I’d head over to the Pearl District for some shopping and then down to the Riverwalk to enjoy a nice stroll. Last but certainly not least, I’d make one last stop at Buc-ee’s in Luling, do some last minute shipping, load up on beef jerky, fudge and some Beaver Nuggets and if I still have some energy, drive across the street to the Lavender farm.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My family. SoléAna Stables would not exist if it weren’t for the love, support, encouragement and efforts of my favorite people in the world! My daughter Solana: Born with Down syndrome and a love of horses, she was our inspiration to start the program. She challenges us each day, but it is her hard work and determination that is contagious. She pushes me to do my best, even when I’m tired and can’t open my eyes. She has a way of making you smile and laugh, when all you want to do it sit down and have a pity party. My husband Andy: the Lord put SoléAna Stables on his heart and if it weren’t for his encouragement, tenacity and perseverance, I don’t know if our program would be as successful as it is today. From day one he has believed in our program and the positive impact it would have on so many families. My daughter Soledad: The big sister that believes her sister can do anything and everything! She is her biggest cheerleader, fiercest protector and is the only one that can make her sister laugh uncontrollably. She loves the Lord with all her heart and has a servants heart the size of Texas!
Photographs were taken by 4 Peas Photography