Shea Hutsenpiller

Rescue Director, Hickory Hill Farm

Hickory Hill Farm Wins ASPCA Help a Horse Day Prizes for their Efforts to Find More Homes for Horses

More than 1,000 horses adopted across the country during the fifth annual #HelpAHorse contest

Wilson County, TN — Hickory Hill Farm has been awarded a $11,000 prize from the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) as part of its national Help a Horse Day contest. The nationwide competition for rescues, shelters, animal control agencies and sanctuaries that adopt out equines is designed to raise awareness about the year-round lifesaving work they do to find homes for horses. Hickory Hill Farm was awarded multiple prizes for placing 2nd in DIVISION 3, 1st for Best Overall Campaign, and RUNNER-UP for best ADOPTION VIDEO based on their performance in the contest. Division winners were scored based on their number of adoptions and the dollar value of donations received during the contest period, along with the quality of their adoption video and campaign. More than 100 groups across the country participated in the contest, with 19 groups winning 23 prizes for their efforts during the contest, which ran from April 26 to June 30.

Hickory Hill Farm based their campaign called “Rescue Resumes” on busting the myths about adopting rescue horses. By providing a resume for each adoptable horse, potential adopters could see exactly what the horse excels in, what they aren’t so great at, and all other pertinent information such as age, breed, and height. They held two events, a Trail Ride and Concert during the contest period to raise awareness about the organization and adoptable horses. Misty, a horse adopted during the contest period, had been awaiting her new home for over a year. Her rescue resume tugged at the heartstrings of a previous adopter that had taken Misty’s sister home the prior year. She made the decision to reunite the sisters and offered Misty a retirement home!

“This contest was a fantastic opportunity for us to raise awareness about our adoptable horses needing new homes,” said Shea Hutsenpiller, Rescue Director at Hickory Hill Farm. “We were excited to take part in the contest and absolutely thrilled to receive such an award from the ASPCA to further support us as we provide care for horses in need and work to find them homes. We are grateful to our community and followers for joining us in the challenge and lending their support during the contest.”

Motivated by the results of ASPCA equine research suggesting there could be approximately 2.3 million adults in the U.S. with both the resources and desire to adopt a horse in need, Help a Horse Day 2018 focused on finding more good homes for horses.

“The primary goal of Help a Horse Day is to elevate equine welfare. This year we challenged groups to focus their efforts on adoption and we were blown away by the incredible progress they made towards finding homes for the horses in their care,” said Dr. Emily Weiss, vice president of ASPCA Equine Welfare. “We are pleased to award this prize to Hickory Hill Farm for their outstanding achievements during the contest, which contributed to more than 1,000 horses finding new homes.”

Help a Horse Day is celebrated annually on April 26 – a date chosen for its significance in the ASPCA’s long history of horse protection. In 1866, ASPCA founder Henry Bergh stopped a cart driver from beating his horse, resulting in the first successful arrest for horse mistreatment on April 26 of that year. Now in its fifth year, Help a Horse Day has been a meaningful way for hundreds of equine rescues and sanctuaries to garner community support for their lifesaving work. Since 2014, the ASPCA has awarded equine groups more than $400,000 in grant funding through the Help a Horse Day contest.

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