April 17, 2022
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The Michigan Horse Council Elects New Directors and Officers at 2022 Annual Meeting
At the 2022 Michigan Horse Council Annual Meeting hosted at the MSU Pavilion on April 12th the organizational members voted to approve the following additions of board members which included Penny Wilson, Julie Vruggink, and Trevor Walton.
Additionally, the Michigan Horse Council Board of Directors voted to elect Julie Vruggink as Vice President for the upcoming year. For the upcoming year Inger Lenese will serve as President, Bruce Deur as President Elect, and Julie Vruggink at Vice President.
The offices of Secretary and Treasurer had no nominations, so the Council Board of Directors motioned to appoint Director and Communication Chair, Sasha Glover, to act as interim Secretary until the May 2022 meeting. Term-limited Treasurer, Sue Armstrong, will hold the position until the May 2022 meeting. Nominations for the offices of Secretary and Treasurer will be accepted/voted upon May 3, 2022, during the Board Member Meeting (7:00pm via Zoom).
The mission of the Michigan Horse Council is to provide individuals and organizations with a central authority that will support, encourage, supplement, and coordinate the efforts of those presently engaged in the constructive conservation, development, and promotion of the horse industry and horse community in the state of Michigan along with educate and inform individuals and organizations through all available media, educational programs, cooperation, and advocate the conservation and promotion of the horse industry and community.
Our mission is to rescue, rehabilitate, retrain and re-home at risk equines. We assist law enforcement agencies and accept surrendered horses from owners displaying a clear need for help (we are not a retirement facility). Our goal is to find every horse in our care a forever home through adoption. This is accomplished through medical rehabilitation and training to ensure each horse, rideable or not, has the skills needed to be a good equine citizen. Established in 1995, the farm is run by our Board of Directors, a small staff of 5 employees and over 100 volunteers helping care for 70 horses at any given time! Our programs include 2 volunteer shifts per day seven days a week, the groom team, the rehabilitation and training team and the maintenance team. Our property of 22 acres holds 23 pastures, a small indoor arena, the Madi Memorial Arena (outdoor) and the Rehabilitation and Obstacle Training Course.
Even with the challenges of this last year, 2020 saw 63 adoptions! 20 companion horses and 43 rideable horses were placed in appropriate, loving homes. So far in 2021, we have welcomed 56 intakes and placed 41 horses.
We have started installation of an automatic watering system and need your help to complete it. This will save on chore time year-round, allowing more time spent with the horses, reduce heating bills by $1,400/month 6 months out of the year, reduce water waste and make volunteering at Horses’ Haven in the winter a much easier task. We have raised $26,000 for this project and need $24,000 to complete.
Horses’ Haven has partnered with the ASPCA to remove geographical barriers in adoption. Early 2020 we made 5 trips to KY bringing 19 horses to Michigan which were quickly adopted into wonderful homes. New this year is the Horse Adoption Express, organized and funded by the ASPCA/Right Horse. Addressing the problem of geography is a large scale effort that needs to have the industry coming together, problem solving, evaluating resources and acting. Through the Horse Adoption Express Program this year, we have welcomed and adopted 6 horses from FL rescues and 10 horses form MN. We are excited to see what we can accomplish in the future with this large collaboration both helping at risk equines, utilizing what our wonderful programs have to offer and fulfilling the demand for adoption in our horse community.
2021 Open House and Haven Hoedown Fundraiser
We will be holding our annual Open House on September 18th from 12-4. This is a family friendly day of meeting the horses, kids activities and touring the farm. RSVP’s are appreciated via Facebook Event post, Facebook messenger or through our website “contact us” form found at horseshaven.org.
In addition, we are continuing the night with our first Haven Hoedown!! This will be a night of music, dancing and food. Tickets will be available for purchase on our website or at our onsite Tack Store.
MHC is proud to release the first show of the Michigan Horse Council News. In this show MHC highlights Michigan trails, MHC events, State Representative, Julie Alexander, and therapeutic riding. We hope you enjoy!
Eleven outstanding Michigan State University (MSU) students pursuing livestock industry-related programs of study for the 2021-22 academic year were recently awarded $30,000 in scholarships by the Michigan Livestock Industry Scholarship Foundation (MLISF). Foundation President, Pete Blauwiekel said, “simply getting good grades is not enough to be recognized with one of these scholarships”. In addition to academic achievement, the scholarship’s criteria include extracurricular leadership and involvement, written and oral communication skills, and enthusiasm in pursuing a livestock (beef cattle, sheep, swine, equine or meat products) industry career. “Those individuals selected for this honor have a clear passion and demonstrated involvement in the Michigan animal industry and a commitment to its future improvement”, said Blauwiekel.