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RQ launches Flood and Cyclone Assistance Fund for animal welfare
14 Apr 2017 | Racing Queensland 

Racing Queensland (RQ) has established a special fund to assist trainers who have encountered additional animal welfare, care and transportation costs due to the recent cyclone and flooding across parts of Queensland.

RQ CEO Eliot Forbes announced the establishment of the Animal Welfare and Training Assistance Fund, for all codes, kick-starting the fund with an initial contribution of $20,000.

Dr Forbes said wagering operators have also been quick to recognise the importance of trainers and their animals to their business operation and to racing in general.

“I want to thank UBET, Tabcorp, Ladbrokes, William Hill and Sportsbet for their major donations and quick support. Already we have around $120,000, a fantastic effort in just two days.

“The Brisbane Racing Club is going to run a charity auction on Victory Stakes day to raise funds and we are in contact with other wagering operators.”

It’s estimated in excess of 200 trainers across multiple regions have faced additional costs for transport, food, forage and bedding for animals, directly related to the cyclone and flooding.

The fund will provide payments to eligible trainers of $350 or $700 depending on the level of activity each trainer has in their region and the impact. Impacted trainers, who have had race starters in the three months prior to impact, are invited to apply from the following local government areas:

• Mackay Regional Council
• Whitsunday Regional Council
• Isaac Regional Council
• Rockhampton Regional Council
• Livingstone Shire Council
• Impacted areas of Logan Council, Gold Coast Council and the Scenic Rim

Dr Forbes invited other key supporters and suppliers to donate funds, as every dollar will be directed to trainers in need, and their contribution will be recognised.

RQ officials will oversee and administer the fund to ensure that some of the pressure is alleviated on affected participants as quickly as possible. “We recognise that the participants and their animals are the backbone of the racing industry,” said Dr Forbes.

Full details on how to apply for funding, the assessment criteria and how you can donate to the fund are available on:

Racing Queensland is also working with clubs to ensure normal racing and training operations are restored as soon as possible with races rescheduled or relocated where possible. Where events have been abandoned RQ has repositioned races and race meetings to other venues to ensure animals have had an opportunity to compete.

Dr Forbes also stated that early estimates indicate the damage to clubs from the cyclone and floods will be in excess of $1m.

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