“Horses for Hope” is a program of Hope Mission

“Horses for Hope” is a program of Hope Mission

‘Horse of Hope’ shaping up to be excellent event Oct. 3

An auction to raise funds for charity is shaping up to be an excellent event, noted one volunteer organizer Sept. 21.

An auction to raise funds for a regional youth-oriented charity is shaping up to be an excellent event, noted one volunteer organizer Sept. 21.

Wetaskiwin businessman Paul Kalke, one of several volunteer organizers who wanted to pitch in and help raise funds for the “Horses of Hope” charity, said the live auction planned for Oct. 3 looks like a lot of fun.

Kalke said he and others have been collecting donations for the live auction and include an impressive list.

Wetaskiwin Martin Deerline has donated a combine or tractor inspection valued at $2,795. Eldon Langerud has donated a handcrafted acoustic guitar valued at $2,500, Johnson Insurance Agencies has donated half a dozen Canadian Finals Rodeo tickets plus $1,000 cash, Pentagon Farm Centre has donated a three-day rental for a skid steer, Jim Odishaw has donated Inuit soapstone sculptures valued at $1,100, Adams Motors has donated autographed Wayne Gretzky and Ryan Smythe hockey jerseys valued at $2,500 each, the Millet Fire Dept. has donated a free ride on a  fire truck, Home Building Centre has donated a propane barbeque, Ted Dreger has donated a load of arena sand with delivery within 15 miles valued at $200 and Steve and Kathy Hollands have donated a saddle and tack.

Kalke said there are numerous other items to bid on, including baking, pet food, horse feed, tack, gift certificates for dining, artwork and much more.

“Horses for Hope” is a program of Hope Mission, which operates a nearby ranch and is looking to raise funds to get “Horses for Hope” rolling along.

According to their website, Hope Mission is a not-for-profit Christian social care agency founded in 1929 in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Hope Mission operates Horses of Hope ranch, formerly known as Bethany Homes, east of Wetaskiwin.

“Located 14 km east of Wetaskiwin, Bethany Homes is situated on 140 beautiful acres,” stated the Hope Mission website. “Bethany Homes is a Hope Mission ministry offering opportunities for gardening. Making this program available to local schools and groups, we hope to partner with our community in delivering a support service for children and youth.”

“Horses of Hope” is a program to teach youth how to ride and interact with horses with the goal of developing character, with a Christian philosophy.

Kalke said local volunteers and business owners heard through the grapevine the program was struggling, and decided to help out. Organizers have a goal of raising $50,000 for the youth program, and are conducting a search for an auctioneer right now.

Organizers are going to have coffee, music and an open facility to tour, complimentary barbeque and a presentation by Rick Benson of Triple Seven Ranch located in Ferron, Utah. Benson is a Christian horseman who helps Hope Mission with their equine program. The highlight of the day will be the live auction.

Volunteers would love to get more “small” items to fill out the auction. Kalke said more information, or donation details, is available by contacting himself at 780-361-5545, Eldon Langerud at 780-312-1073 or Leonard Ohlmann at 780-699-7740.