As part of Horse & Hound's 130th birthday celebrations, we will be supporting and promoting good causes via regular online round-ups of events being run by the equestrian community

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Ebola affects work of welfare charity

The Gambia Horse and Donkey Trust (GHDT) is finding it harder to find vital volunteers due to the threat of Ebola.

The fear of the disease has caused tourism to drop by 60% in the country, despite there being no Ebola there.

“With tourism declining at present we have less visitors to our centre and the volunteers we rely so heavily on are not visiting so readily,” said a spokesman for the charity.

The other threat to the welfare of working equines is the shortage of rain, which has led to poor harvests and less fodder for the horses and donkeys.

The GHDT provides veterinary treatment at its centre in Sambel Kunda and runs weekly mobile veterinary clinics to more rural areas. It is also teaching local people skills such as harness making and farriery.

The charity has a team of local Gambian staff and one paid UK staff member, but is otherwise run by dedicated volunteers. These include vets, farriers and harness makers from the UK who provide essential training and services.

If you are able to donate tack, volunteer or help raise funds email ghdt@gambiahorseand donkey.org.uk or visit www.gambiahorseanddonkey.org.uk

Donation to animal sanctuary

Animal Friends Pet Insurance has made a surprise Christmas donation of £10,000 to the Animal Sanctuary in Wilmslow, Cheshire.

The company’s founder Elaine Fairfax said the animal welfare charity was “thoroughly deserving of this donation.”

“They rely on local donations and work so hard to support the animals in this area of Cheshire. I’m so glad we can support them and keep the animals safe this Christmas,” she said.

The charity is using the money to provide a heating system for the animals in the isolation pen, and replace the lighting in the barn.

“This money means so much to us and all the animals that we help to rehome,” said Melanie Hay, a volunteer trustee.

For more information visit www.animalfriends.co.uk

Royal visit to Horse Rangers carol service

Prince Michael of Kent was the guest of honour at The Horse Rangers annual carol service at Hampton Court Palace on 7 December.

Following the service the children’s charity held a 60th birthday party in the garden room of the Palace for a hundred guests.

“Having Prince Michael with us for the carol service was a perfect end to our special year. We now look forward to the coming years as we grow our links in the community,” said Horse Rangers trustee chairman, Richard Bevan.

The Mayor of Kingston, who has chosen Horse Rangers as one of his charities was also at the service along with the deputy mayor of Richmond.

Horse Rangers operates like the Scouts or Guides but with horses. It has seven squadrons, two of which are dedicated to children with special needs.

The charity has 30 ponies and is supported by over 200 volunteers including officers and instructors, many of who were Horse Rangers themselves.

It offers 400 children the chance to learn horse management and relies totally on sponsorship, donations and fundraising activities.

For more information visit www.horserangers.com

Fundraising for Teenage Cancer Trust

H&H reader Stacey Rushworth is raising funds for the Teenage Cancer Trust in memory of Victoria Lunn who lost her long battle against the disease on 7 December.

“They do a wonderful job for all the younger generation suffering from this dreaded disease and have looked after Vicki since she had her first attack of cancer at 16 years of age,” said Stacey Rushworth on her Facebook page.

So far she has raised £1,050 for the charity.

For more information visit www.justgiving.com/Stacey-Rushworth1/

HorseWorld Raffle Raises over £6,000 for winter food

A raffle run by HorseWorld has raised £6,608 to help the charity care for rescue horses in the busiest months of January and February.

The winner of the raffle, launched in October was Mrs Walsh from Longwell Green in Bristol.

She was presented with a cheque for £1,000 at the charity’s headquarters on 16 December. Ten runners up received a cash prize of £10 each.

The funds raised from the raffle will provide food, bedding and medical treatment for the 140 rescued horses, ponies and donkeys at HorseWorld.

It will also be used to support the charity’s work with vulnerable young people through its educational ‘Discovery’ programme.

“We are approaching what we refer to as the rescue season,” said Stephen Poole the charity’s spokesman.

“The money raised from this raffle will be a welcome boost to help cover some of the veterinary costs which can run into many thousands for each horse,” he added.

For more information visit www.horseworld.org.uk