Horses have played a sizeable role in the lives of Leon and Anne LaBrecque and today, the Metamora couple wants to help others have the opportunity to interact and learn with these majestic creatures. For that reason, they’ve created the Harnessing Your Equestrian Experience Fund with Four County Community Foundation.
In his youth, Leon worked at race tracks in Hazel Park. Anne cherished any chance she could to go on a trail ride as a kid. As an adult, she was able to pursue her passion and followed the lead of their daughter who was a competitive rider in high school and college. Today, the LaBrecques own three horses themselves and Anne takes part in dressage competitions.
The goal of the Harnessing Your Equestrian Experience fund is to make equestrian sports accessible to more people, particularly local youth. The LaBrecques foresee working with high school and college level equestrian teams, 4-H clubs and organizations that connects kids with horses. Projects could range from covering the costs of supplies and other horse care necessities to excursions or veterinary science learning opportunities.
“Working with horses builds perseverance and character,” Leon said of their desire to promote horsemanship opportunities. “Horses require a lot of hard work but they are also a lot of fun.”
Helping competitors maintain their ties to the equestrian world while pursuing higher education is also a point of interest for the LaBrecques.
“Like golf, equestrianism can be a lifelong sport or passion but even if someone gives you a horse, there are all the other responsibilities and costs that coincide with owning and caring for a large animal. One of our goals is to help high school graduates maintain their passion for equestrian activities while continuing in their education,” Anne said.
The LaBrecques plan to host fundraisers to benefit the Harnessing Your Equestrian Experience Fund to include all disciplines from English to Western. Additionally, they look forward to collaborating with other equestrian enthusiasts, including local trainers, to spark interest in the fund’s efforts.
To donate to the Harness Your Equestrian Experience Fund at Four County Community Foundation, visit https://bit.ly/3XVlVLs or visit https://www.4ccf.org/donate-online/ and select ‘Field of Interest Funds’ and then ‘Harnessing Your Equestrian Experience.’ Checks can also be sent to Four County Community Foundation at PO Box 539, Almont MI 48003.
Four County Community Foundation is a 501c3, non-profit community organization (Tax ID: 38-2736601) dedicated to making a positive impact on the communities they serve in southeastern Lapeer County, western St. Clair County, northern Macomb County, and northeastern Oakland County.
For more information about the Harnessing Your Equestrian Experience fund, call (810) 798-0909 or contact the foundation’s Executive Director Kathy Dickens at email@example.com.