BHS launches urgent Faith, Hope and Charity Appeal
Helping to change abandoned ponies from ‘trash’ to ‘treasure’.
Britain is in the grip of an unprecedented horse crisis with thousands of horses known to be at immediate risk. Today the British Horse Society launches a new campaign to save lives and shine the spotlight on the issues, including indiscriminate breeding, that have brought us to this catastrophic position.
Enter Faith, Hope and Charity - three mares who symbolise all that is wrong with horse welfare in Britain today. The British Horse Society is caring for these ponies and will be following their story as they are transformed from one man’s trash to another man’s treasure as they raise funds by Christmas to support their training and care as well as helping others like them too.
Lee Hackett, BHS Director of Equine Policy, said: “Each mare, Faith, Hope and Charity, has had a dreadful start to life. Faith was found on public land in an urban area, terrified and shaking having had beer cans and cigarette butts thrown at her while she scratched around for food. Hope was found on a housing estate, thin and suffering from a severe bacterial infection and worm infestation – she was so ill that we thought we would lose her. Charity was found dumped on a Welsh common struggling in a very harsh environment where a number of other dumped horses had died starving and frozen the previous year – she was rescued by the Society for the Welfare of Horses and Ponies who worked with us here at the BHS to ensure that Charity wouldn’t face a situation like that again.
“Somebody considered all of these ponies to be so worthless and useless that they deserved to be dumped like a bag of old rubbish. The BHS disagrees – they have been through so much and we believe they deserve a chance. We urgently need to raise funds to put these mares through the rehabilitation and training they need to turn them into the shining stars that we know they can be. If we can raise the money we need to facilitate it, we want to work with our BHS Approved Riding Schools to offer these ponies the best education available. If we can turn them into happy, healthy working animals we will give them purpose and value. In turn that will make them desirable and therefore unlikely to re-enter the depressing downward spiral of neglect and abuse that they have already experienced in their short lives.
“The BHS will follow their stories closely and show that rescued horses can make wonderful and useful animals. Things won’t always run smoothly but that’s horses for you and we can all learn through their progress – bumps and all! It is a hugely exciting project and we are urging all those that love horses to get involved and donate to secure the future of these horses. Britain prides itself on being a nation of animal lovers but the state of our horse population makes a mockery of that. We hope people will join us in our quest to start righting the wrongs. If we can raise enough to help Faith Hope and Charity who knows how many other horses we can help.”
This ground-breaking project demonstrates The British Horse Societies ambition to not only offer immediate help to rescue horses suffering due to the horse crisis but to offer them a secure life to safe-guard their future. At the end of their initial training period in March 2015, all three ponies will be offered to BHS Approved Centres to continue their life as happy, productive and useful working ponies.
The Faith, Hope and Charity Appeal is now open and the BHS is encouraging everyone to hold their own fundraising events or to donate to the cause.