As some of you may be aware, a fellow equestrian, Brittni Raflowitz, has been selected to go on the USEF 2016 Show Jumping Development Tour which is in Europe. For those of you fortunate enough to have shown in Europe, you may know how expensive it is – transportation, lodging, caring for the horses, etc. While USEF does give $15,000 to the riders selected, they are left to foot the rest of the bill themselves.
Brittni has started a GoFundMe to help raise money for her to be able to get to Europe and participate in the tour. While she is splitting the cost with a fellow rider who has also been chosen, she is still in need of funds in order to participate.
While I know GoFundMe accounts for horseback riding expenses are a touchy subject for some, with equestrians falling on both sides of the coin, I got the pleasure of not just speaking with Brittni this afternoon, but also hearing some opinions about her from others in the equestrian world. I have heard nothing but positive things about what a hard worker she is and how she deserves to represent the United States on this tour.
According to an article on NoelleFloyd.com, “…she’s no trust fund child, and has worked to establish herself and her horses. Now she faces a potentially career-changing journey—with a $50,000 price tag.”
Brittni wrote a heartfelt letter on her GoFundMe beginning with this:
This letter is very difficult for me to write as I have never taken nor asked for any handouts. I have had the great honor bestowed on me as being named to the US Senior Nations Cup Team to take place in Europe this summer. I am now beginning to raise funds to make my dreams come true.
While some of you may fall on the side of the coin that thinks these types of fundraising efforts are taboo for the equestrian world (and we are all entitled to our own opinion), I believe that instead of tearing other equestrians down for trying to pursue their dreams, we should be supporting them. Brittni is not your typical rich kid that has had everything handed to her and is now asking for money from strangers to get even more handed to her. She has worked hard to establish herself in this business, and she is a genuine, kind soul about which I, personally, have never heard anything negative.
If you can in any way support Brittni’s campaign, whether it’s with a monetary donation or by sharing her GoFundMe page with your followers, I know she personally will greatly and deeply appreciate it.
To donate and read more about her story, please go here. Any amount will help, and I know if any of you were in her position, you would greatly appreciate the kindness of fellow equestrians, too.