A Vaudreuil horse rescue organization has been nominated for a national award for their work with retired caleche horses.
A Horse Tale Rescue takes in caleche horses who have been retired or phased out due to Montreal's upcoming caleche ban.
"To date we've taken in six ex-caleche horses. We've worked with the owner to retire them here," said executive director Mike Grenier.
There are currently two horses in their midst: Ulysses and Blanco.
"With the ban that's coming up this year, we're open to taking in more," said Grenier.
A Horse Tale Rescue has been nominated by Horse Canada for the Hero of the Horse Award, the only organization in Quebec nominated.
Vaudreuil-Soulanges MP Peter Schiefke has been a long-time supporter of the rescue group.
"Mike and his entire team have been doing incredible work in our community for years now. I love that they've been nominated for the 2019 Hero of the Horse Award because it gives them some extra notoriety, extra publicity, for the work that they're doing. Deservedly so, but also a chance to earn some extra money, win some extra money to help expand what they're already doing," he said.
The plan is to expand fundraising to build a large barn to accommodate up to 40 horses, up from their current twelve. There, they would welcome groups of veterans, people with intellectual disabilities, and women's shelters to work with the horses. The aim is to help them make connections and build confidence – and rescue more horses in the process.
"It's a big project, but we need to grow," said Grenier. "The horses are counting on us, and the humans are counting on us."