Surprise, Elation, and Gratitude

Unwanted Horse Coalition Blog Written by Jennifer Purcell
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Unwanted Horse Coalition Blog Written by Jennifer Purcell

These are my three favorite emotions, but when one’s daily work involves unwanted horses, they are rarely the most common. 

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Last week, I was fortunate to experience all three at the same time. Imagine arriving to work at 6:45 a.m., coffee in hand, not quite awake after snoozing on the bus. There is a letter on your desk. You look quickly at the return address and see “Foundation” among other words, so figured it was that $1,000 check you were waiting for. You turn on the computer, swap out walking shoes for heels (remember, I work in DC), and open the envelope. Yep, it was $1,000. But, wait.

I’m in my forties and my eyesight is starting to remind me of that fact. It was only March of this year that I finally broke down and bought reading glasses. Blurry vision stinks. So, blame it on that or the fact that it was still before 7 a.m., but I thought I saw too many zeros. I looked closer and there were, in fact, five zeros, a decimal point, and two more zeros. My head cocked to the left like when my dog sees a hummingbird or something that piques his interest. I looked at the accompanying letter. Again, the same number of zeros. I double checked to be sure my name was on the letter.

Then, I took a deep breath and smiled the most satisfying smile ever. I didn’t know that smiles could be satisfying.

Fundraising can be difficult; anyone in non-profit work knows that. Raising resources to care for rescue horses is exceptionally challenging, and rehabbing neglected horses doesn’t come cheap. The UHC has always wanted to take a more proactive approach to addressing the issue of unwanted horses and started Operation Gelding back in 2010. Just this past June, three months into starting work at the UHC, the members decided to expand the program, offering more guidance, more financial assistance, and a voucher program for owners who are unable to transport their horses. I had suggested a goal to raise $50,000 for 2017, lofty indeed as the UHC never had a significant fundraising effort in the past.

Ask and you shall receive. I have to believe that when we work for a noble purpose that good things come our way.

I am so extremely grateful that the donors recognize the multiple benefits of gelding horses and chose to play a huge role in the effort to make it happen! The results will be significant, not only for the horses themselves, their owners, and the equine-community, but think about the cost savings to rescues that might have to care for the unwanted foals that 1000 stallions could potentially produce. Those dollars can go to helping other horses in need.

Just because the UHC received this very generous contribution, it doesn’t mean that we stop fundraising for the cause. I’m looking ahead to 2018 because there will be more stallions to geld!

But, I can truly smile knowing the huge impact this gift will have on preventing unwanted horses in the first place. I hope the donors are smiling too.

Let’s get gelding!

P.S. We’ll reveal the name of the Foundation in a press release and on the UHC website very soon.