Money seized from criminals to help Horsewatch group

Criminals’ ill-gotten gains will allow a Horsewatch organisation to continue to support victims of rural crime.

North Wales Horse Watch has been given £4,920 after they applied for a share of a £60,000 pot through the ‘Your Community Your Choice’, a joint initiative of the Police and Crime Commissioner for North Wales and North Wales Police.

The initiative supports community projects by donating some funding from the police and crime commissioner and money seized from criminals under the Proceeds of Crime Act. Applications were considered by a police panel, then opened to an online public vote.

Helen Lacey, who founded North Wales Horse Watch in 2010 after a driving harness and generator of hers were stolen, told H&H the funds will allow the voluntary organisation to continue to support victims of crime.

“We applied for the funding because rural crime is massively on the increase. A lot of yards were being targeted and people were coming to us asking for tack-stamping and we didn’t have the resources to cope with the number,” said Helen.

“We have a new project visiting schools, universities, Pony Club branches, and clinics to educate the younger generation about crime prevention. It starts at an early age – if they can be aware of what is going on then it helps them growing up.”

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The funds will go towards more equipment including microchip scanners and a purpose-built trailer to allow the organisation to attend events and offer tack-marking and demonstrations.

“It feels good that the funds have come from proceeds of crime and are now being used for crime prevention and education,” said Helen.

“Volunteers give up their time but we can’t run on fresh air, so by receiving the money our volunteers can continue to help people. I feel very supported by people voting for us. We had lots of posts on our Facebook page encouraging others to vote for us and congratulating us when we won.”

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