New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program, the largest racehorse adoption charity in the United States, received the 2020 Lavin Cup from the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP).
Known as the AAEP’s equine welfare award, the Lavin Cup recognizes a non-veterinary organization or individual that has distinguished itself through service to improve the welfare of horses. New Vocations was recognized December 9 during the AAEP’s 2020 Annual Convention & Trade Show, which was held virtually.
Founded in 1992, New Vocations’ mission to rehabilitate, retrain and rehome retired racehorses has led to the placement of over 7,000 individuals, with nearly 500 retirees served by the program each year. With facilities in five states—Kentucky, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Louisiana—New Vocations serves over 40 racetracks, working directly with owners and trainers in need of equine aftercare options.
“New Vocations has a longstanding commitment to the health and welfare of the equine athletes that deserve help in transitioning to a healthy and productive second career,” said co-nominators Dr. Jeff Berk and Dr. Wesley Sutter. “In every sense, they have partnered with us, the equine veterinarians who seek the same goals for our patients.”
Despite COVID-19-related shutdowns in the spring that prevented potential adopters from visiting New Vocations’ farms in person, the charity found suitable homes for a record number of horses in April and May through social media. Potential adopters undergo a thorough application process, and as adopters’ circumstances may change, New Vocations remains committed to each horse with a lifetime open-door policy for returns.
For more information about New Vocations, visit its website.
The American Association of Equine Practitioners, headquartered in Lexington, Ky., was founded in 1954 as a non-profit organization dedicated to the health and welfare of the horse. Currently, AAEP reaches more than 5 million horse owners through its over 9,000 members worldwide and is actively involved in ethics issues, practice management, research and continuing education in the equine veterinary profession and horse industry.