A new program for 2018 (getting a head start a few weeks early because of need) will allow Heart of Phoenix to hold 5 OTTBs from Charles Town through a program we are working on with the Aftercare program from the track.

Come January first, we will be applying for TAA Accreditation, as well.

But the story is a little more “kismet” than all of that, friends. This type of “destiny,” if you will, seems to follow us about, and call it what you will, but I think it helps us know when we are working in the right vein, looking at the right needs.

As of September, I had reached out to the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance to see when HOP might be able to apply for accreditation should we find that West Virginia had a need for in state help with OTTBs.

I knew we could apply in January and that we would need to hold a certain number of Thoroughbreds, but because we have not had many come through over the years, I wasn’t sure if this was the right move since I didn’t “SEE” an obvious need here. It is important to us to focus where a clear need is, as we work on a small budget with only volunteers. We must help where we are needed most.

The questions from of our team were: “Is there a need in our state for this?” and then, “Where will they come from?”

I had said, “I am going to contact the tracks to see if they really need our help,” but I had not done so, yet. We hadn’t publicly spoken of this plan at all, actually.

Out of the blue, I received an email from a former Animal control officer we’ve worked with, and she is now with the Charles Town Aftercare program. She wanted to know if HOP would generally have space or the ability to help with horses in OUR state that needed to transition off the track and into new careers in a routine way.

I was blown away. We had just been having this conversation. Literally, all our questions were answered in her first email. Yes, there is a need in WV. Yes, we know HOP. Yes, We have enough horses in need to make this a program.

Luck with a Kiss and Master Rudy will make their way to Heart of Phoenix because they need to transition now verses after January 1st, but here is to moving into an area that is a big new for us, but really. . .helping horses find new homes is what we do best, so I think “U-Turn” will prove a wonderful, successful program.

Should you want to become involved, partner with us in any manner in this pilot program for HOP, please do reach out.

If you would like to become a monthly sponsor for these horses or others that will come to HOP until they find the RIGHT home, PM us!