A horse sanctuary in Weatherford is hosting a fundraiser on March 25.
Golden Reward Sanctuary opened in 2019 to aid horses in need.
The “Spring Fling” fundraiser is an effort to expand the sanctuary’s pasture and raise funds for new fencing. The organization also hopes to attract more sponsors for the horses.
President and Founder Melissa Hadley told NBC DFW that without sanctuaries, older or injured horses could end up being killed rather than cared for.
“A number of them, especially the ones who have a physical ailment, would end up at the sale barns and unfortunately the horses that have something wrong with them or are older will go to kill barns and they’ll go to Mexico for slaughter,” she said, per NBC DFW.
Hadley described Golden Reward Sanctuary as a “retirement home.”
Currently, the sanctuary is taking care of 26 horses. In the organization’s almost four-year run, it has found 11 horses new homes, and it has lost five horses, according to Hadley.
Even though the sanctuary takes care of horses who will soon pass away, Hadley still believes that the sanctuary makes a difference.
“They had a good life, you know, until they passed. So it does make a difference,” she expressed to NBC DFW.
The sanctuary is able to care for the horses only thanks to volunteers and donations. They invite people to sponsor a horse, which helps pay for the animal’s food and upkeep costs. A little less than half of the horses still need to be sponsored.
Volunteers and sponsors can spend time with the horses, either grooming, training, or even riding the ones still capable of holding a rider.
Many of the volunteers and sponsors form special bonds with the horses.
“There’s a bond that you can have with them when you can find, like, the one,” Hadley told NBC DFW.
The fundraiser will celebrate the 32nd birthday of a horse named Annie and welcome springtime. The event takes place from 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
However, anyone who mentions seeing Golden Reward Sanctuary on NBC DFW and who donates at least $50 to the organization’s fencing project can arrive at 12:30 p.m. for some special pre-Spring Fling events.
For more information about the Spring Fling fundraiser, check out the organization’s events page.