...my treasures do not sparkle they clink,
they shine in the sun and neigh in the night...



Our Staff

Sonny Richichi

Sonny is the legal representative of the Association, and its institutional relations manager. He directs the general administration of IHP. He supervises the daily management of the horses, in which he plays an active role, and selects and coordinates the volunteers. He liaises with the public prosecutors in relation to confiscated equines maintained by IHP, handles reports of possible mistreatment and organises the IHP investigations.
Sonny has been a LAV (Lega Anti Vivisezione - Italy's most important animal rights association) volunteer for many years up to the present, covering various offices starting from 1999. Among other things, he was a LAV National Directive Council member from 2002 to 2006, LAV President from 2004 to 2006, and the National Manager of the LAV Equine Sector from 2004 to 2008. He was Director of the Flaminia da Filicaja Foundation in 2009, before founding IHP.
Up to 2007 Sonny worked in a bank, rising to the position of Branch Manager, before the radical life-changing decision to work for his abiding passion, horse welfare.

Laura De Benetti

Board member

She has loved animals since she was born, but she has always been particularly fascinated by horses: at the age of 20, she started riding horses and, after almost ten years of stubborn equestrianism, she realised the egocentrism and specism that lie behind the world of horse riding.

She has been a volunteer for several animal welfare associations for 16 years; she approached IHP in 2023, as she firmly believes that it is the only association in Italy for the protection of equids that considers the horse as a companion animal and not as a tool for human use.

She is really proud to have joined this great team and to be able to give her contribution to the aims of IHP!

Marco Vagliasindi

Board member

He has two great passions in life: the mountains, of which he has made his main activity, and animals, especially horses. Like many others, he naively approached horses through horse riding, which he also practised for many years with professional activities, until he realised that often, behind an appearance of love and respect, realities of exploitation and suffering are hidden. This is how he got to know IHP, with which he has been collaborating for several years now. A convinced anti-specist, he also works as a volunteer with other associations against hunting and poaching.

Anna Vannucchi

EIA horses management
She graduated in Natural Sciences, Nature Conservation (University Federico II, Naples) in 2005. Specialized in Ethology: animal welfare and management (University of Florence, prof. Dessì).
She approached IHP in 2017. She fine-tuned her knowledge about horses mainly through field work and the management of free-roaming horses at IHP, in particular by working with some horses who had suffered abuse and trauma in the past.
She has always been a great lover of nature and animals and has been committed to fighting against animal cruelty and environmental degradation for many years. At IHP, Anna looks after horses positive for equine infectious anaemia on a daily basis (see our in-depth discussion), which by law must be kept separate from other horses and are therefore in a separate Centre.

Rosa Palazzo

She first encountered IHP a few years ago and initially followed their activities from afar without being an active part of the association. Later she had the opportunity to get to know the association from the inside as well as the world that pivots around horses. The deep respect for IHP and the people who work there led her to propose herself as a translator, to bring IHP's communication abroad and to strengthen international cooperation.

Susan Garvin

Susan has lived in Italy for over 30 years. Born in England, she caught the horse bug at a tender age and has never recovered! Susan uses her translation skills to contribute to the betterment of horses' lives, supporting IHP horse care information campaigns and the battle against equine abuse. She has a diploma in horse behaviour (Warwick College, GB).