Each year, local nonprofits come together to participate in the annual Tin Cup Challenge hosted by the Community Foundation of Teton Valley. These nonprofits work tirelessly within our community to provide programs and services that improve lives in Teton Valley. Serving as both a 9-week campaign for giving and a one-day event celebrating our community’s spirit of generosity, the annual fundraiser allows these local organizations to focus more fully on the work of their mission while providing them with an opportunity to raise and then leverage the funds needed to fulfill that mission.
HAPI Trails Horse Rescue is one such organization…
Founded in June of 2009, HAPI Trails Horse Rescue saw the need to provide a happy, healthy and nurturing environment for unwanted, abused, abandoned, retired and neglected horses and made it their mission to do just that.
This 100% volunteer organization puts in almost 7,000 man hours each year between 8 board members and approximately 15 volunteers, doing work that would otherwise require a paid staff of almost 4 full-time employees. Currently fostering 8 horses that are available for adoption, HAPI Trails board members/“foster parents” graciously welcome these four-legged friends into their homes, spending a minimum of 2.5 hours each day with them, often while juggling full-time jobs, families and their own four-legged family members.
According to Julie Martin-Stacey, Volunteer Executive Director for HAPI Trails, “without the Tin Cup we would NOT exist. The Tin Cup provides well over half of our operating budget. Our funding almost doubled last year and, because of it, we were able to accept 5 more horses into the program to foster, including the 15 extra tons of hay that they required.”
The 8th Annual Tin Cup Challenge will mark the 6th year of participation for HAPI Trails and with a 70% adoption rate and no sign of the need for their services slowing down, they hope for another successful year of outreach and service. “The exposure that we receive just by being involved is tremendous. It [the Tin Cup Challenge] gives us fantastic opportunities to reach people in the community who would normally not know about us or have access to our horses,” says Martin-Stacey.
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Thanks to the 7th Annual Tin Cup Challenge, we were able to purchase 50 tons of hay, 52 bags of supplemental feeds and provide farrier and veterinarian care to all our horses throughout the year! We were also able to foster 6 additional horses and send one horse to a professional trainer to advance its adoption potential, with enough left to secure a portable shelter and round pen for on-property training. As a 100% volunteer-driven organization, the Tin Cup Challenge accounted for approximately 60% of our operating budget in 2014 and provided us with the funding needed to continue our mission to provide a happy, healthy and nurturing environment for unwanted, abused, abandoned, retired and neglected horses.
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