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August 2008 Issue
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Partnership puts trust in horse research

 Veterinary Science

South Australia's horse industry is showing its support for the University of Adelaide's School of Veterinary Science, with the launch of a new trust fund for horse-related research.

Known simply as "The Horse Account", the Australian Horse Industry Research and Development Trust has been established by the not-for-profit community-based horse industry organisation, Horse SA, to help raise funds for the Vet School's work.

The trust fund will provide much-needed financial support for research into equine health and welfare.

The Horse Account was launched last month at a public lecture at the University of Adelaide organised by Horse SA, the Vet School, and Development and Alumni at the University.

"This is the first and only fund of its kind in Australia," said the Chairperson of Horse SA, Helen Whittle.

"Since our inception nine years ago we have enshrined in our constitution the intention to promote equine-related educational and research activities.

"We saw the need to establish a fund, led by horse owners themselves, to publicly demonstrate our support for fostering the skills and knowledge of young people to research leading-edge horse health and welfare. We also saw the need to provide an opportunity for horse lovers to put aside money in their wills as an ongoing legacy to the animals they love.

"The Horse Account is a Deductible Gift Recipient Fund recognised by the Australian Tax Office, with all proceeds going directly to equine-related research," Ms Whittle said.

The fund aims to support work in a range of areas, including:

  • Horse health and welfare;
  • Environmental management related to horse keeping and horse trails;
  • Hoof care science;
  • Facilities for research;
  • Equine sports, and sports performance surfaces;
  • Education of horse owners in topics related to scientific findings;
  • Scholarships for students involved in equine-related studies.

"The union between Horse SA and the University of Adelaide stands to benefit both the school and the horse industry, and we look forward to a long and fruitful association," Ms Whittle said.

The Head of the University's Vet School, Professor Gail Anderson, welcomed the new fund.

"The establishment of The Horse Account will be crucial in assisting our new Vet School to develop a research and development program specifically for the equine industry," Professor Anderson said.

"As well as providing horse owners with the opportunity to benefit from the latest knowledge in equine health and welfare, this work will have important spin-offs for direct application to other animals, and even human health. For example, equine research in joint repair methods leads the way for arthritis treatment in all species, including humans.

"We are extremely grateful for the opportunity to partner with Horse SA, and welcome their support in creating equine research opportunities in this State," Professor Anderson said.

To donate to The Horse Account, contact Horse SA on (08) 8294 2460, or donate by using PayPal at the Horse SA website:

Story by David Ellis

For more information about studies in Veterinary Science visit the Roseworthy Campus Careers & Information Day (Friday 15 August). Information is also available at Open Day (Sunday 17 August).

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