The ASPCA Equine Fund’s Rescuing Racers Initiative is pleased to celebrate its fifth year with the announcement of 25 new grant recipients. Launched in 2010, Rescuing Racers Initiative is a major grants program created to aid in the rescue and rehabilitation of retired racehorses—many suffering from career-ending injuries—to save them from slaughter. The inclusion of this year’s recipients brings the program’s total to $1.7 million in equine-related grants since 2010.
“The ASPCA Rescuing Racers Initiative began with an anonymous donation of $1 million, and we’ve been fortunate enough to carry on this much-needed grants program thanks to the continued generosity of that donor and many other animal advocates,” said Jacque Schultz, Senior Director of the ASPCA Equine Fund. “We’re grateful to have the resources to assist these rescues, which provide sanctuary and after-care to retired racers, saving them from ending up at livestock auctions and slaughterhouses.”
This year’s recipients include a wide range of equine rescues from 14 states, and each will be awarded a grant ranging from $1,500-$25,000. The grant funding helps the groups increase capacity for rescuing more horses, and this year primarily focused on training and rehabilitation costs such as veterinary care, therapeutic shoeing, and boarding to recover from career-ending injuries.
“Rescuing is only the beginning,” said Susan Peirce, president and founder of Red Bucket Equine Rescue, one of the grant recipients. “With deep appreciation to the ASPCA Rescuing Racers Initiative, we will be able to continue to rescue, rehabilitate, and train deserving equines.”
The organizations joining the list of rescues and sanctuaries as part of the ASPCA Rescuing Racers Initiative for 2014 are:
Akindale Rehabilitation & Land Conservation, NY
Brook Hill Retirement Center for Horses, VA
Equine Outreach, Inc, OR
The Exceller Fund, KY
FL TRAC, FL
Friends of Ferdinand, IN
Hidden Acres Thoroughbred Rescue, FL
Hooved Animal Humane Society, IL
Kearney Area Community Foundation/Double R Horse Rescue, NE
Kentucky Equine Humane Center, KY
Makers Mark Secretariat Center, KY
MidAtlantic Horse Rescue, MD
Neigh Savers Foundation, CA
New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program, OH
Red Bucket Equine Rescue, CA
Rerun Inc, VA
Second Stride, NY
Southern California Thoroughbred Rescue, CA
Standardbred Retirement Foundation, NJ
Thoroughbred Athletes, OK
Thoroughbred Placement and Rescue, MD
United Pegasus Foundation, CA
Please join us in congratulating this year’s Rescuing Racers Initiative grant recipients!
We’d like to extend a big thanks to the PEDIGREE Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping dogs in need find loving homes by supporting the good work of shelters and dog rescue organizations around the country. In 2013, the Foundation awarded a $25,000 grant to the ASPCA in support of our Behavior Rehabilitation Center. The ASPCA Behavioral Rehabilitation Center at St. Hubert's Animal Welfare Center in Madison, New Jersey, is the first and only facility dedicated to providing behavioral rehabilitation for undersocialized canine victims of cruelty, such as those confiscated from puppy mills and hoarding situations.
Julie Duke, Executive Director of the PEDIGREE Foundation, paid a visit to the Behavior Rehabilitation Center. She was so impressed with the work the ASPCA is doing to help turn severely fearful dogs into adoptable companions that she arranged for Kristen Collins, ASPCA Director of Anti-Cruelty Behavior Rehabilitation, to present at the 2014 Tennessee Animal Control Conference on August 4 and 5. Julie strongly believes that animal welfare shelters in Tennessee will benefit greatly from hearing our specialists talk about the Center and our work there.
We are truly grateful for the PEDIGREE Foundation's generous support. For more information about the Foundation, please visit www.pedigreefoundation.org.
Today is an exciting day for horses nationwide: The ASPCA Equine Fund has officially awarded its 1,000th grant! The $5,000 grant, awarded to Equestrian Inc. of Tampa, Florida, will be used to repair the organization’s feed room roof, which was destroyed during a storm in May. During the storm, Equestrian Inc. lost $4,000 in grain and hay.
The ASPCA Equine Fund has supported non-profit equine welfare organizations since the program’s origin as the Lucky Fund in 1996. The Fund provides life-saving resources to organizations nationwide including financial help, consultation, in-person and online training and sharing of best practices. In 2013 the ASPCA awarded $1.4 million in grants to support equine rescues and sanctuaries in 43 states and the District of Columbia. Since 2008, the ASPCA Equine Fund has awarded a total of approximately $5.5 million to more than 450 organizations.
When a 34-year-old woman made the difficult decision to flee from domestic violence in her home, she ran into an immediate roadblock: her Chihuahua, Peppah. Though recent studies show that 70 percent of domestic violence perpetrators also threatened, injured, or killed their pets, this woman couldn’t find a single shelter in New York City that was willing to take both her and Peppah in. Desperate, she turned to the Mayor’s Alliance of New York City, who agreed to foster the dog temporarily while she looked for a solution. That solution finally came in the form of Urban Resources Institute (URI).
URI is a non-profit agency that provides safe shelter not only for domestic violence survivors, but for their pets as well. Their PALS Program (People and Animals Living Safely) marks the creation of New York City’s first and only domestic violence shelter that allows pets—and with studies showing that nearly half of domestic violence victims delayed fleeing out of fear for their animals, this resource could not have come at a more crucial time.
“Lack of pet-friendly sheltering options places animals and people at risk of continued violence and harm,” says Allison Cardona, Senior Director of Cruelty Intervention Advocacy at the ASPCA. “The PALS program is a life-saving initiative that keeps families together and should inspire other providers to follow suit.”
Once in the URI shelter, the woman and her children were reunited with Peppah.”The kids—when finally we got here, they didn’t even want to go to school that day,” she said. “They just wanted to stay home and be with her.”
In February, the ASPCA announced a $75,000 grant in support of URI PALS. In addition to financial support, our partnership with the program also includes an array of services ranging from veterinary care to foster assistance. So when the time came for the woman and her family to leave URI and transition into more permanent housing, the ASPCA’s own Jamie Scotto stepped in.
A Senior Manager in our Shelter Research and Development department, Jamie brought Peppah into her home as a foster so that the woman could work on getting into long-term housing. “I wanted to give her the opportunity to focus on the rest of her life,” says Jamie. “I saw first-hand that just a few weeks of foster care can mean the difference between an animal being surrendered and that animal staying with their family.”
In addition to our work with URI, the ASPCA is on the ground in several states around the country spearheading legal efforts to include pets in orders of protection. We are committed to keeping domestic violence survivors and their pets together, and though Jamie and Peppah have grown close, we cannot wait for the day when this sweet dog and her family are reunited in a safe, permanent home.
After delivering Mabel at the Great Plains SPCA, our team headed to Lincoln, Nebraska to deliver Iso to his temporary home at the Capital Humane Society. Iso enjoyed a bowl of kibble al fresco before arriving at the shelter, where he settled down in the grass to relax with his new human friends. Iso is a happy dog who loves to make canine buddies, and his favorite activity is to settle into your lap! If you would like to adopt Iso, please contact the Capital Humane Society.
For our last stop, our team traveled nearly 500 miles to Longmont, Colorado, a town outside of Denver. On the morning of the Fourth of July, the last of the #FreedomDogs, Wickham and Fitz, arrived at the Longmont Humane Society. There, both dogs will receive behavioral enrichment to gain confidence. Our transport team saw firsthand how these dogs began to come out of their shells along the ride. By the end of the road trip, Wickham showed his silly, playful personality and Fitz greeted us with eager tail wags. Follow Longmont Humane for updates on their progress.
While the trip is over, the journey for these dogs continues as they wait to find loving homes. Check out our #FreedomDogs hashtag and Facebook album to view photos and updates from the transport, and stay tuned for news to come as Nightwing, Valentino, Mabel, Iso, Wickham and Fitz find their forever homes.