Dressage Foundation to Award Record $240,000 in 2011

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Carol Lavell, Gordon Cadwgan, Maj. Gen. Jonathan Burton, The Dressage Foundation Chairman, and Jan Brons. © SusanJStickle.com

LINCOLN, Nebraska, April 7–The Dressage Foundation will award $240,000 (€168,000) in scholarships and grants in 2011, a record for the organization that was founded 11 years ago in this city in the American heartland to help grow and develop dressage in the United States.

The foundation is a model of America’s approach to sports funding which depends almost solely on financial support from individuals and corporations, none from governments, and sparse administration overhead so the lion’s share of contributions go where its intended.

The money for the grants is already in the bank as donor-designated funds and the foundation has launched a drive to give it away to riders at all levels, instructors, judges from grass roots to high performance, from Pony Club to Century Club. Descriptions of grants, scholarships and programs and how to apply are at http://www.dressagefoundation.org/home_1.htm.

The grants, scholarships and programs available from the foundation are:

–Anne L. Barlow Ramsay Grant–one $25,000 annual grant to train and compete in Europe (must be an American-bred horse ridden by a US citizen);

–Carol Lavell Advanced Dressage Prize–two $25,000 annual grants for training and coaching available to horse and rider teams whose plan is to reach and excel at the elite, international standards of high performance dressage;

–Major Anders Lindgren Scholarship–one $6,000 grant and two at $2,000 each for concentrated instructor training;

–Olympic Dream Program–about $30,000 to send four top young American dressage riders to Europe for a two-week introduction to European dressage. Applications accepted from Young Riders, 16-21 years of age, and 22-year-old graduates of the Advanced Young Rider Program riding at Fourth Level or above.

–Continuing Education for Instructors–About $12,500 to fund continuing education clinics for instructors;

–Violet M. Hopkins Fund–about $35,000 for 20 to 30 grants each year of up to $2,000 each for educational clinics and seminars;

–Renee Isler Dressage Support Fund -up to nine annual grants of $800 each to help Junior/Young Riders attend clinics;

–Sally Swift Memorial Fund–at least one grant annually of up to $1,000 to host a Centered Riding Clinic.

–Trip Harting Fund–one annual grant of $500 for a Pony Club rider to attend U.S. Dressage Federation ‘L’ Education
Program or Instructor Certification Program;

–Gifted Fund–up to nine annual $1,000 scholarships for Adult Amateurs for dedicated training with their horse away from the pressures of daily life and jobs;

–USDF Region 9 Teaching Excellence Award–one $5,000 annual award to an instructor in Region 9 (Southwest), and

–Amanda Ward Legacy Fund–one annual $1,000 prize to the highest scoring Junior/Young Rider at Third Level and above, at the New England Dressage Association Fall Festival.

A few funds also exist that do not have specific number of grants or a specific amount available each year.

The foundation created a “Targets of Opportunity” Fund to provide support to fulfill requests for funding that do not clearly fit current funds.

The foundation also provides financial assistance to the USDF for the FEI Junior/Young Rider Clinic Series and the USDF USEF Young Rider Graduate Program and the Continuing Education for Judges and USDF ‘L’ Program Graduates through the Edgar Hotz Judges Endowment Fund.

A popular non-financial program is the Century Club which recognizes dressage riders and horses whose combined age totals 100 years or more. Horse and rider perform a dressage test of any level, at a dressage show or event, and are scored by a dressage judge or professional as a celebration of horse and rider teams.