This week, we are meditating on the theme of help. During these long days of the coronavirus, we have been deeply touched by how many people have rallied round us. We’ve had many, many calls – to check we are all right, to talk about the future, to offer us material help and moral support. The telephone rings all the time, from our friends in the services, from our partners in racing, from other charitable organisations, sometimes from people who have just been to visit us once and who still hold us in their minds and hearts. The wider HorseBack family has stayed in touch, all the volunteers and the mentors and the old compadres. Quietly, away from the public gaze, fund-raisers are still raising funds. You, here on this page, visit us every week and many of you have made generous donations. We know that there is economic worry out there, so we especially cherish your kindness.
As lockdown goes on (and on), we notice that emotions seem to be very near the surface. Even the most stoical members of the HorseBack team are having difficult days. Out there in the turbulent seas of social media, it doesn’t take much to set off a storm. Those are the stories the media focus on, so it can sometimes feel as if the whole world is in chaos. But away from the front pages, in the quiet backwaters of ordinary life, people are still looking after their neighbours, supporting good causes, doing their best to give something to their community. We know we are not alone in the kindness and help we are receiving.
And this touching outpouring of support makes us think of all the wonderful and enduring help we have received over the years. We talk always about the importance of the team, and HorseBack has been a huge team effort from the beginning. We couldn’t even begin to list the fantastic people and organisations who have given us their time, their knowledge and advice, their sheer hard work. People have cycled for us and built stables for us and picked ragwort for us. They have offered us their horsemanship expertise, opened up new horizons for us, encouraged us every step of the way.
Everyone needs a helping hand, and now more than ever. We are profoundly grateful for all the hands who have helped us build HorseBack from two people with a dream to the sturdy organisation it is today. We stay hopeful that we will be able to move into this rather uncertain future, to expand and adapt, and to give our own help where it is most needed. With all the brilliant people who are rooting for us, we believe that anything is possible. A heartfelt thank you to all of them.