A HORSE sanctuary in Wythall needs to raise £10,000 to stay afloat after being severely hit by the coronavirus pandemic.

The Healing Horse Sanctuary must raise the five-figure sum to pay outstanding bills and to enable them to continue their work until they can reopen to the public.

The sanctuary is a self-funded charity and currently is home to 20 horses and ponies rescued from the local area. It is staffed by unpaid volunteers.

Susie Gessey, founder of the Horse Sanctuary, is appealing for donations at https://thehealinghorsesanctuary.enthuse.com/cf/urgent-appeal

She said: “We have all been affected in one way or another by the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown.

“Most people haven't been able to go out - however we have been thrilled that our dedicated team of unpaid volunteers have continued to look after our 20 horses and ponies during such challenging times.

“However, we usually raise in excess of the £2,000 per month minimum needed to keep our sanctuary open by various fundraising events including open days and visitors.

“None of this fundraising has been possible due to lockdown and we now find ourselves in a position where we need to raise £6,500 to pay outstanding hay bills, food merchants, large vet bills and rent.

“Another £3,500 to £4,000 is needed to support us for the next couple of months as there is no government plan to allow us to reopen and have our usual open days, visitors and other fundraising events involving gatherings of people.

“We are therefore putting out an urgent plea for £10,000 to help us continue our work.

"All monies raised and donated will go directly to our horses as our Sanctuary is run by unpaid volunteers and any donation big or small is massively appreciated by all the horses, ponies, volunteers and trustees.

“We have partnered up with “Charity Checkout” who are similar to Just Giving and have been so helpful in helping us set up this campaign.”