Her name is Kat, but she’s always loved horses.
She never had a chance to be around them, though — until last winter. That’s when the 37-year-old Westporter learned that Rising Starr Horse Rescue had opened in Wilton.
The non-profit rescues, rehabilitates and re-homes animals that have been mistreated or abandoned. Rising Starr also offers boarding, lessons, leasing, equine yoga, team building, and school and youth programs. A special veterans’ program enables servicemembers to ride free, with their families.
Kat — whose day job is with a Wilton marketing firm, and is married to 1997 Staples High graduate Michael Palmer — can’t do anything to help the more than 100,000 horses slaughtered each year. But she echoes Rising Starr’s line: “We can save one horse at a time.”
Kat began mucking stalls on the 40-acre facility. Then she rode the ATV, with hay and water. She’s added social media to her responsibilities too. She’s helping now with a “grand opening” video, with a virtual tour and introduction of the horses.
“This is so fulfilling,” Kat says. “I’m learning so much. The teenagers, and even 8-year-olds, who volunteer are so knowledgeable.”
From its start in 2015 with 13 horses, Rising Starr has blossomed. It’s at full capacity: 30. They come from all over, thanks to referrals from the national horse community.
Fundraising has been tough, due to COVID. Laurelrock’s owner Burt de Marche stepped up recently, donating field work. Upcoming projects include barn painting, fencing and electrical work.
To help, and for more information, click here.