Help Save Worthy Trails Horsemanship

2020 has certainly been a tough year for everyone, and I am worried the series of events that has happened this year may put Worthy Trails Horsemanship out of business. I started off the year with the hope that this would be the year I was able to move the business I have worked 10 years to build to its own ranch, its own home. But before January was over, we were hit with the highly contagious horse disease called Strangles. With 30+ sick horses, the vet bills ran up into the thousands, and the ranch we rent space on was in quarantine (no horses in or out) for 5 months without the ability to earn an income. Our vet bills for strangles totalled $4045, and our loss of income in the 5 months was over $10,000.  As soon as we were able to reopen for outside horses, the world got hit with the COVID virus. Because of COVID, I had to limit our lessons which bring in a large amount of income. I lost 6 steady students who caught COVID and the regular paycheck that they bring in. It’s been a constant struggle to get out of debt with half the amount of work coming in, and I had to sell a few horses to maintain making our payments. I was just a couple months from being able to once again at least break even, when Oregon caught on fire.  The Beachie Creek fire came within 2 miles of our ranch and we had to evacuate, along with the entire herd of horses. Thankfully, the fire did not reach us and we were able to return after 10 days. But those 10 days ran up quite a few bills and upon return, I am once again not able to work. Due to the smoke the horses breathed in during the wildfires, and poor air quality, it is vet recommended that horses should not be worked for anywhere from 2 to 8 weeks to recover from smoke inhalation. So with the bills that keep coming, and the months of not being able to work also increasing, it’s time for me to just ask for, and hope for help.


Worthy Trails Horsemanship is a small black woman owned horse business in Oregon. I do my best to show off online that Worthy Trails as a big successful busy horse facility. But really it’s just me, waking up at 4 am and running things almost entirely on my own. I grew up in Philadelphia and started with horses at the carriage company. At that time, I was unaware of the lack of diversity in the horse industry. It became obvious when I came to Oregon, a state that is less than 3% black. I think the number of confederate flags on the back of trucks outnumber the people of color here, especially when you visit a horse show or a rodeo. The horse industry itself has not been welcoming to people of color, at one point during Black History Month, I had planned on making a FB post of famous women of color in the horse industry and could not find more than 3-4 that were successful. It’s discouraging to know that there are very few women of color that have managed to be leaders that the next generation can look up to. It’s important that Worthy Trails stays in business so the next generation knows that it is possible to be a horse trainer, an equine professional, and an equine business owner, even if you grew up in the big city and not out on a ranch that was passed down through generations of cowboys. 


Prior to the series of bad luck events that hit me this year, I was on track to be able to purchase land for Worthy Trails. The plan was to buy bare land in the area and build a horse facility. It took two years of living in a camper to minimize rent payments to build up the credit and be in a position to start looking for property. But that idea keeps getting pushed back as I am now once more forced to stop working and still face with debt along with next months bills. I certainly won’t be able to survive another emergency if I can’t get the last 3 paid off before the end of the year. And if those got paid off, I would be back on track to be one of the first black landowners in the area! 51380172_1600728254592794_r.jpeg

Donations

  • Kandis Prescott  
    • $50 
    • 1 mo
  • Terrie Dougherty 
    • $100 
    • 1 mo
  • Tamera Snodgrass 
    • $100 
    • 1 mo
  • Cara Alferness 
    • $50 
    • 1 mo
  • CHRISTINE DIAMOND 
    • $100 
    • 1 mo

Organizer

Sarah Brown 
Organizer
Lyons, OR
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