Son Care Foundation was formed as a result of its founder, Jack Gould, having been in Law Enforcement and Emergency Medical Services for 32 years, seeing the traumatic results of poor choices made by young adult men. The common element of these choices was that the men had no real plan for their life. The founders believed that while there were numerous resources for young men already in trouble, there was a real need for a preventative mentoring program. Jack, and his wife, Karen, decided to create a mentoring program for these young men to learn to put together a Life Map to guide them in making wise choices. The Life Map would help them look at their identity, ability to relate to others, and plan a successful life. This program called Alpha Academy started in 1994 in Texas and later moved to Woodlake, CA. In 1998, we relocated to a 40-acre ranch in San Luis Obispo, CA.
Son Care Foundation believes in financial sustainability and wants to make sure the program is helping our communities for many years to come. As a way to not completely rely on gifts and grants a financial support system was built. 2005 marked the opening of Thousand Hills Pet Resort, our largest and most successful small business project. This project was started to give the Alpha Academy students work experience and helped meet some of our operating costs. Thousand Hills Pet Resort provides the San Luis Obispo community and visitors to the area a safe and fun place for their dogs and cats to enjoy daycare, boarding, grooming, and training services.
In 2014, an employee of Thousand Hills Pet Resort, Monica, started training dogs with two Alpha Academy students as a new work experience opportunity. She had prior education and experience training service dogs and her diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis made her very excited about providing service dogs for those in need. One of the founders, Jack, had a history working in law enforcement and emergency medical services so he had prior knowledge of the need for service dogs for veterans with PTSD. The startling statistic that more than 22 veterans commit suicide every day showed us who we needed to provide these service dogs to. This side project was the genesis of New Life K9s.
The cost to provide these service dogs is very significant, so to help provide more service dogs the Mission Cars vehicle donation program was created. The program accepts all different types of donated vehicles, and our mechanic makes necessary repairs so the vehicle can be sold. All profits from the sale go to New Life K9s. We saw how this program could help to support New Life K9s financially, so we wanted to also help other nonprofits in our community. The Mission Cars program partners with several San Luis Obispo County nonprofits to manage their vehicle donations as well. Any vehicle donated to another nonprofit will receive 50% of the profit and the other half goes to New Life K9s.