Grants totaling over $788,000 were awarded this year, Thoroughbred Charities of America announced Wednesday.
Eighty two grant applications were received earlier this year during the organization's annual grant cycle. Ultimately, 69 organizations were approved for a grant, including 46 aftercare organizations, 14 backstretch and farm worker programs, five equine-assisted therapy organizations, three Thoroughbred incentive programs, and one research organization.
Included in the granting total is over $12,000 expended from the Horses First Fund, an emergency fund, administered by TCA and established LNJ Foxwoods, that assists Thoroughbreds and their caretakers in need of emergency aid due to large scale neglect, natural disaster, or other catastrophe. The Horses First Fund aided in a food-assistance program at Woodbine Racetrack earlier this year for backstretch workers left without an income when COVID-19 halted racing at the track. The Horses First Fund also assisted Equine Rescue of Aiken with an emergency grant for a catastrophic barn fire earlier this year.
TCA's 2021 grants to organizations that provide health and human services for backstretch and farm workers were bolstered by support from Fasig-Tipton and buyers at Keeneland's September Yearling and November Breeding Stock Sales as well as the January Horses of All Ages Sale. Over $100,000 was raised and awarded to approved organizations.
“Fundraising has been a challenge over the last year and a half for many nonprofits,” said Erin Crady executive director of TCA. “We are happy to be able to assist nearly 70 organizations with a grant to help them carry on their vital work with Thoroughbreds and backstretch and farm workers. Our grants are only possible thanks to our generous donors.”