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Still paying it forward

Rattlesnake Slim's donates $80,000 worth of equipment

Posted: September 9, 2008 9:29 p.m.
Updated: November 11, 2008 5:00 a.m.

Volunteer Joe Bonner (left) helps Mayisha Akbar, founder and program director for the Compton Junior Posse, load boxes into a horse trailer on Tuesday.


Rattlesnake Slim's may be temporarily closed, but it hasn't stopped the Newhall coffee and tack shop's owner from giving back to the community.

On Tuesday, members of the Compton Junior Posse hauled boxes filled with horse equipment from Gordon Mehterian's store into a horse trailer thanks to a donation from State Farm Insurance, Mehterian's insurance company.

The tack and supplies were worth an estimated $80,000, Mehterian said.

Rattlesnake Slim's caught fire on July 22 after an area of trash and cardboard boxes outside the store caught fire, causing smoke and water damage inside the business.

Although Mehterian plans to reopen the popular coffee shop, he is unable to sell any of the store's products because of smoke damage.

Mayisha Akbar, founder and program director of the Compton Junior Posse, said the equipment will allow the 50 members of the posse, ranging in age from 5 to 18, to participate in competitions.

"It gives us an opportunity to come in and look like we're on an equal level," she said at the store, surrounded by boxes of tack and supplies.

She believes the donation will boost the childrens self-esteem as they continue their involvement in a program focused on self-development.

The posse uses horses as motivational tools to teach kids about responsibility and self-growth, she said.
Along with lending a hand to the Compton Junior Posse, horse equipment from Rattlesnake Slim's was also donated to Heads Up Therapy on Horseback and a rodeo team based in Agua Dulce.


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