The vision for All the King’s Horses Children’s Ranch began in Transkei (pronounced Tran-sky), South Africa. In November 1998, after almost a year’s mission in the village of Willowvale, Ana Lucore sought the Lord for His leading as to what her future held. As she meditated at her window, she realized what a comfort the mission station’s animals had been when she had first arrived there. They had been familiar friends in an unfamiliar land and an unfamiliar culture.
Ana found herself thinking of children in need of a home. Children who, through no fault of their own, needed a change of environment. Perhaps they just needed a chance: a chance to live safely, have nutritious food and adequate clothing and enjoy a nurturing family; a chance to know appropriate love and learn to love in return. Ana heard the call to go back to America and help the children there.
From this experience, the seeds of the Children’s Ranch were born. In 1999, a non-profit organization was created, under the name of All the King’s Horses Children’s Ranch, and work began to make the ranch a reality. The name of the ranch was inspired by these words:
“All the King’s horses, His women and men, with the King, put broken children together again.”
The purpose: to establish a ranch-like setting as a refuge for abused and neglected children.
When Ana Lucore arrived in Benson in 2000, she began her mission with needy children in the area, working from her home as she waited for guidance. In October 2004, land for the ranch was acquired – 90 acres in Benson, bordering on the San Pedro River.
During the first years, much effort by volunteers was put toward clearing brush and trash from the land. A singlewide mobile home was set up as home and office for Ana, now the Director of the Ranch. While she temporarily fostered some children in her home, space was limited, and the real vision of the Ranch was to build other homes on the property where live-in house parents could focus on providing support for the children.
From the start, the organization determined they would place their trust entirely on God to provide for the finances and other needs of the Ranch. They decided to share their vision and wait on the Lord to move the hearts of those who would donate time, money or needed items.
The Ranch embraced a “Noah Philosophy”, meaning they would take each step forward toward their goal as God provided the resources. For example, they would not try to house the children until appropriate homes could be built or acquired, and suitable house parents were found.