The Right Horse Initiative Awards $275,000 to increase adoptions in Appalachia

by | Jul 2019 | News

OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLAHOMA –  The Right Horse Initiative, a program of the WaterShed Animal Fund, has awarded $275,000 to Heart of Phoenix Equine Rescue to significantly expand their support of at-risk horses in Appalachia.

Heart of Phoenix, located in Huntington, West Virginia, has been helping horses in transition since 2012. The grant will allow them to make capital improvements, increase staffing and training abilities to ultimately increase their capacity to help horses. Within three years, the grant funds will allow Heart of Phoenix to help 25% more horses annually.

“We live in a region of the country that demonstrates a great need for increased equine welfare and community resources for struggling owners. The demand for horses needing care is greater than our current capacity,” stated Heart of Phoenix President Tinia Creamer “More lives will be saved and changed than ever before and improvements we’ve been working hard for over the course of many years will finally be possible.”

As a partner of The Right Horse Initiative, Heart of Phoenix is focused on increasing adoptions and helping horses in transition in the United States. Since inception, they have helped over 400 horses transition into new homes. A highlight of the program is their annual Appalachian Trainer Challenge. The Appalachian Trainer Challenge matches adoptable horses with professional trainers, culminating in a competition and adoption event.

“Our mission at The Right Horse Initiative is to massively increase adoptions in the United States. Heart of Phoenix has done incredible work rescuing, rehabilitating and adopting out horses in an important community. We are thrilled to be able to elevate that work by providing them with the necessary resources to help more horses,” said Christy Counts, President of The Right Horse Initiative.

To learn more about Heart of Phoenix Horse Rescue, visit To view currently adoptable horses from Heart of Phoenix, visit

About The Right Horse

The Right Horse Initiative is a collective of industry professionals and equine welfare advocates working together to improve the lives of horses in transition through a dialogue of kindness and respect. Through collaboration with over 50 industry and adoption partners, The Right Horse is able to innovate new and better adoption standards and practices. Together, the goal is to shatter the stigma and reframe the conversation around equine adoption in order to massively increase horse adoption in the United States. To learn more, visit

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Holly + Gilly

Holly + Gilly

Bringing Gilly home is the best decision I have ever made. I love learning to ride. My two young daughters love being with horses and spend hours at the barn helping me work and taking lessons. My husband and I are sharing a new passion.

Stacey + Raphael

Stacey + Raphael

Some days we just stand together, some days I groom him, others we go for walks or head to the arena and play. I tell him he is my favorite and how much I love him. He nudges me gently with his nose or will rest his head on mine.