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Third Annual Youth Essay Contest Winner Announced
Monday, September 21, 2015

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Thoroughbred Charities of America is pleased to announce the winner of the Third Annual Youth Essay Contest. Spring DeFranco, 14, of Ontario, New York, has been named the winner of the contest.

The contest was open to recipients of services, volunteers, supporters or any one, 18 years of age or younger, that has been impacted by an organization that received a grant from TCA in 2015. To participate, contestants submitted an essay containing a minimum of 300 words and a maximum of 600 words, describing how a TCA grant recipient has affected his or her life.

Essays were judged by select TCA board members and staff of Blood-Horse Publications on numerous criteria including the presence of a compelling and passionate argument, grammar, vocabulary and style, neatness and adherence to contest rules.

DeFranco wrote about her experience as a volunteer with Finger Lakes Thoroughbred Adoption Program in Farmington, New York.  The organization will receive a grant of $1,000 for DeFranco’s essay. Read her essay here.

 “We would like to thank all of the contestants who shared their personal experiences with us,” said Erin Crady executive director of TCA. “Each essay was a unique glimpse into the tremendous work that our grant recipients undertake each day and the impact that they have on horses and humans alike."

TCA distributes grants to several categories of Thoroughbred-related nonprofits including retirement, rehabilitation and adoption organizations; backstretch and farm employee programs; therapeutic riding programs; and research organizations.  Since its inception in 1990, TCA has granted over $21 million to more than 200 charities that successfully meet the criteria set forth in its annual grant application.

TCA’s mission is to provide a better life for Thoroughbreds, both during and after their racing careers, by supporting qualified repurposing and retirement organizations and by helping the people who care for them. TCA raises money for distribution to charitable organizations that work to uphold its mission. From 2000-2014, more than 95% of TCA’s expenditures were allocated to program services including direct grants.  Donations to TCA are always accepted and can be made as direct donations or as donations in lieu of flowers, birthday gifts or other occasions. TCA’s largest annual fundraiser is a Stallion Season Auction held each January. For more information please visit www.tca.org. TCA is the charitable arm of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (TOBA).