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Horse Therapy Program Expands

Published: June 25, 2015 12:47 pm ET

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Woodbine Entertainment Group, in harmony with Horses Offering People Encouragement, the Ontario Standardbred Adoption Society, the Central Ontario Standardbred Association, and Halton Police’s COMMANDE program, are pleased to announce the launch of a spring session of HOPE at Windrush Stable in Moffat, Ont.

“We are thrilled to see the HOPE program expand into Halton Region,” says Jamie Martin, executive vice-president, racing, WEG, of the event that launched this May. “WEG remains committed to supporting and assisting racehorse adoption and placement programs that work tirelessly to ensure these horses are provided with the welfare, safety and dignity they so deeply deserve in their retirement. HOPE is a shining example of how retired racehorses can continue to have a positive influence on people after their racing careers are over.”

A therapeutic horsemanship program, HOPE unites retired racehorses with the community’s most vulnerable citizens.

“COSA is very pleased to support the effort to bring the HOPE program to Halton Region,” says, Bill O’Donnell, president, COSA.

Participants receive hands on training in basic horsemanship skills like grooming, haltering, tacking, herd dynamics and horse anatomy from experienced horse caretakers.

OSAS is thrilled at the opportunity to have HOPE participants enjoy their program’s horses.

“We are very excited and proud to work closely with HOPE and our other partners,” says Joanne Colville, events coordinator, OSAS. “Not only will people have the chance to be face-to-face with these wonderful horses, they will also get a better sense of farm life through tending to gardens and learning and interacting with other farm animals.”

It’s a sentiment echoed by Lesley Ridout-Gauer, general manager, Windrush.

“Windrush is honoured to open its doors to HOPE,” says Ridout-Gauer. “We look forward to uniting people with these horses, creating a truly memorable experience for everyone involved in the program.”

Last October, a five-week pilot was launched in partnership with COMMANDE, LongRun Thoroughbred Retirement Society and WEG. It was hosted at Emerald Lane Farm, a longtime LongRun foster farm, located in Thornton, Ontario.


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