Today, I am looking on the Adena Springs Facebook page (yes, I know Facebook is the devil, but it’s so useful… and fun!), staring at a photo of the spectacular Alphabet Soup…
… when a thought occurs. “I wonder what other horses are in this album?” And I begin to snoop. There are some lovely horses in the Adena Springs Retirement Program ready for adoption, some other photos, and a photo with the following caption: “Met with Saratoga War Horse. Awesome people. Awesome Program!” My interest is piqued.
It’s true, I am a Facebook voyeur ~ especially when it comes to horses. Contrary to all the laws of the universe, this voyeurism has led to many untold and beautiful discoveries. And so of course, I “google” Saratoga War Horse.
It proves to be one of the great discoveries.
“Only 1 percent of American men and women have answered their country’s call to serve and protect in the military, and yet out of the entire general population in the United States, those who have served account for 20 percent of all suicides.” (Bob Nevin, co-founder, Saratoga War Horse).
The Saratoga War Horse Program teaches veterans how to work through stress and trauma by connecting with former racehorses through the process of “Join-Up,” based on the work of horse whisperer Monty Roberts. Best of all, Saratoga War Horse also gives retired racehorses meaningful second careers, a major issue confronting the thoroughbred industry. Still in the early stages of development, the Saratoga War Horse could eventually involve literally hundreds of former racehorses.
“We have world-class horses assisting world-class soldiers,” Nevins said. “We have the soldiers saving the horses because without them these horses could fall through the cracks and wind up at the slaughterhouse. The same thing with the soldiers. If they’re not coming out, getting the help that they need, they’re falling through the cracks.”
Kudos to the wonderful people at Saratoga War Horse for being the cement that helps seal those cracks!