Leader of Aberdeenshire Council Anne Robertson has donated £1,500 to help an Aberdeenshire-based charity continue its support of those who have served in the armed forces.
HorseBack UK is a charity created three years ago by former Royal Marine Jock and Emma Hutchison at Dinnet, near Aboyne, to provide a safe and secure environment to aid those serving, or who have served, in the UK armed forces.
It is supported by national charity Help for Heroes and other organisations, and has a central focus on the support of those who have suffered physical injury and/ or acute stress as a result of their commitment to their country.
HorseBack UK combines western horsemanship, rural skills and adventure training, and endeavours to integrate serving personnel and veterans into the rural community to inspire meaningful and rewarding futures.
Councillor Robertson visited Jock at the charity’s headquarters to find out more about its work and to hand over the donation.
Councillor Robertson said:
“The support the charity provides is very inspiring and those involved are passionate about their work.
“I am delighted to have met some of the servicemen who are benefitting from the work of this organisation and to learn of their experiences since arriving at the centre.
“It is a privilege to support the work of Horseback UK and to understand the potential this has to change lives.”
The charity currently has 23 horses and plans to use the donation to purchase an adapted western saddle.
Jock is hopeful of setting up a total of five centres across the UK over the next two years. The charity also plans to expand on a new scheme whereby those who have received support from HorseBack UK have in turn provided adventure training to The Queen’s Guard.