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IHWT founder Sharon Power shortlisted for Local Hero Awards 2012

Sharon Power of Irish Horse Welfare TrustSharon Power from Wicklow has been named as one of five people shortlisted for the Santa Rita 120 Local Hero Awards 2012.


Santa Rita 120, the premium Chilean winemakers, called for people throughout the country to nominate someone they felt deserves recognition for the outstanding work they do in their local community.


The winning Santa Rita 120 Local Hero will receive €10,000 to spend on their nominated piece of community activity, as well as a trip of a lifetime for two toChile, the home of Santa Rita wine. Their nominator will also receive a trip for two toChile.


Sharon was shortlisted for the celebrated title of Santa Rita 120 Local Hero 2012, for her tireless work as founding member and a key driver of the Irish Horse Welfare Trust, a charitable organisation set up in 1999 to help the plight of horses inIreland.


Sharon works tirelessly and selflessly to save countless animals from starvation and abuse and has been at the forefront of horse welfare campaigning and government lobbying and joined forces with the equestrian industry to drive improvements and bring about change in horse welfare legislation.


In addition to equine welfare, racehorse retraining and equine rescue, the IHWT under Sharon’s guidance has been a pioneer in developing education programmes with communities across the country. These communities include a range of travelling families, settled travellers and horse owners from disadvantaged areas.


Over the part seven years, the IHWT has successfully run educational projects with groups from the Darndate area in Dublin, Moyross in Limerick and more recently co founded the Dunsink Horse Club with Fingal County Council and local horse owners.


The most recent project in Dunsink had received worldwide notoriety when international media spoke of the dumped and dying horses abandoned on the old landfill site. The IHWT, Fingal Co. Co. and local horse owners together formed a plan in which all horses were rounded up, micro chipped and passported. The IHWT then spearheaded a programme to educate the horse owners through training to accreditation, delivering the first equine management programme in the country.


The winner of the Santa Rita 120 Local Hero competition will be announced in The Merrion Hotel,Dublin, on Thursday 8 March 2012.


Sally-Anne Cooney, General Manager of Gleeson’s incorporating Gilbeys, which distributes Santa Rita wine inIreland, says:


“The ‘Santa Rita 120 Local Hero’ award is aimed at recognising the fantastic work that ordinary people do inIrelandevery day.Sharonis a fantastic representative of what it means to be a true local hero and we are delighted to have her as a finalist.”


The other nominees are: Brother Kevin Crowley, founder of the Capuchin Day Centre in Bow Street, Dublin, Dorothy Lynch from Kildare, who has raised thousands of euro for REHAB, the Samaritans, and the Irish Cancer Society, Fiona Tiernan who founded the charity Plurabelle Paddlers, a breast cancer dragon boat team, and Vincent Farr, fireman and local activist in charge of renovating the Old Coast Station in Crosshaven and establishing a memorial for the last stop of the Titanic also in Crosshaven,

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