Penn Valley, CA - October 20, 2016 – “Right now, less than 25 cents per horse is being spent annually on equine medical research funding in the United States, and that’s a shame when you consider how much our horses mean to us,” said Michael Van Noy, DVM.
“I challenge equine organizations in all disciplines and breeds to add a $1 equine medical research donation to every test, class, course or start in your competitions. You will make a difference and your members will support you.”
Van Noy, founder of Auburn Laboratories, Inc., can say that based on personal experience. He, along with past USEA President Keven Baumgardner and USEA Board of Governors Member Katherine Cooper, helped to initiate the USEA Equine Medical Research Program, of which Cooper is now Chair.
“USEA is in its third year of raising nearly $50,000 annually for equine medical research through a simple $1 per start donation,” Van Noy explained.
“If other organizations – such as the United States Dressage Federation with 30,000 members or the United States Hunter Jumper Association with 40,000 members, for example – donated $1 for every dressage test ridden or course jumped, equine medical research funding could be hundreds of thousands of dollars stronger.”
USEA’s fundraising system is simple: a $1 donation is added to the start fee at each event and at year-end the sum of those $1 fees is donated to select organizations including the Morris Animal Foundation, a global leader in funding scientific studies that advance the health of horses, dogs, cats and wildlife. The USEA Equine Medical Research Committee selects the equine medical research projects to support with their funds, from recommendations made to them by Morris.
In 2015, the USEA had 43,617 starters, meaning USEA members helped raise $43,617 for equine medical research last year, and starter numbers have been steadily rising in the past three years, so it is hoped that this number continues to grow for 2016.
“There’s an incredible need for more equine medical research,” Van Noy contended. “What horse owner hasn’t used sophisticated diagnostic, therapeutic or preventive healthcare options made possible by ongoing equine medical research? And who hasn’t mourned the situations where medical solutions just aren’t available yet? For all that our horses do for us, and for all they mean to us, they deserve the best care we can give them, and the best way to advance equine medical care is through research.”
Sadly, funding for equine medical research is astonishingly small, reported Van Noy. “The funding bar is pretty low at less than 25 cents per horse per year. If every competitor donated a dollar each time they competed, what would that cost over the course of a year? One latte, or two?”
Given the substantial annual spending required to support a horse ($16,000 per year by United States Equestrian Federation’s Equestrian Magazine readers, for example, or 3,200 lattes) there’s reason for hope. Increasing equine medical research funds by donating the cost of a latte or two is clearly within the budget of most horse owners, and USEA has proven that members will support it.
“USEA’s successful fundraising model proves it can be done,” said Van Noy. “Now we need other equine organizations to step up to the challenge: USDF, USHJA, USA Reining and many more. If these organizations would add a $1equine medical research donation to every test, class or course in their competitions, imagine the difference that could make for everyone’s horses.”
For more information on how your organization can accept this challenge and make a difference, contact Michael Van Noy at 530-432-8157 or email [email protected].
Are you following along with the action from home this weekend? Or maybe you're competing at an event and need information fast. Either way, we’ve got you covered! Check out the USEA’s Weekend Quick Links for links to information including the prize list, ride times, live scores, and more for all the events running this weekend.
The 2021 USEA Annual Meeting and Convention is three months away, and this year USEA members will reunite in Area X! Every USEA member is invited to celebrate the 2021 competition season in Albuquerque, New Mexico on Dec. 9-12. The week will be packed with educational seminars, committee meetings, open forums, and the annual awards. Start planning your trip to Albuquerque!
The USEF Amateur Task Force is requesting your valuable feedback on several USEF Amateur Rule changes under consideration by the USEF Amateur Task Force.
Plantation Field International celebrates its 14th year of competition this year with CCI4*-S, CCI3*-S, and CCI2*-S competition kicking off on Thursday, September 16, and running until Sunday, September 19. Tucked away amidst the hills of Unionville, Pennsylvania, the event is known for its stunning cross-country backdrops and the top field of riders the competition draws in.