‘Foals from the Heart’ Auction Benefits JustWorld Initiatives

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The ‘Foals from the Heart’ auction, run by Vincent Desmarez and his family, raised €11,140 for JustWorld International. Photo credit: Sportfot

August 9, 2010 – Laventie, France – Equestrians across the world are joining the movement to help those less fortunate, as evidenced by a breeding auction held in France that raised €11,140 to benefit JustWorld International initiatives.  JustWorld International is a not-for-profit, humanitarian organization working as a catalyst for positive change in the developing world by helping underprivileged children.

The ‘Foals from the Heart’ auction is run each year by Vincent Desmarez, father of JustWorld Amateur Ambassador Tiphaine Desmarez of France.  Vincent presented JustWorld with a check for €11,140 in a special presentation held prior to the start of the Global Champions Tour Grand Prix at CSI5* Chantilly, France, on Saturday, July 17.  JustWorld Ambassadors Julia Tops of Canada, Luciana Diniz of Portugal and France’s own Kevin Staut accepted the check on behalf of JustWorld.  Staut, who is the reigning European Champion and currently ranked the number one show jumping rider in the world, also acted as the ‘Foals from the Heart’ spokesperson.

“It was so great that Kevin supported our initiative to help JustWorld,” said Vincent’s son, Thomas Desmarez.  “When he was out on the grand prix field at Chantilly and spoke about the important work that JustWorld is doing, it all came together.  It is wonderful to have such a big name behind such a worthy cause.  It attracted all sorts of attention and local press.”

Vincent Desmarez owns and manages Haras de L’Ermitage, the family’s farm and breeding operation.  Since 2007, Vincent has organized the annual ‘Foals from the Heart’ auction to benefit a charity of the family’s choice.  This year, at his daughter Tiphaine’s insistence, JustWorld was chosen as the recipient.

“For two or three years now, Tiphaine has wanted to organize something big to benefit JustWorld International,” said her older brother, Thomas, who acts as head of communications for Haras de L’Ermitage.  “Finally, we got it organized!  People tend to take more notice of humanitarian initiatives within their own communities, and Tiphaine inspired us to want to spread JustWorld’s message to as many people as possible.  We could not be happier with the outcome, and JustWorld could not be a more worthy recipient.”

The silent auction, which was held February through March 2010, sold breeding rights to 15 top stallions, including such famous names as Champs Elysees, Kannan, Ogano Sitte, Quite Easy, and Quito de Baussy.  The breedings were generously donated by the stallions’ owners, making the auction an event that truly required equestrian community teamwork.

“I want to thank everyone, no matter how big or small their contribution, for helping us to make the auction a success,” said Vincent Desmarez.  “Thank you to everyone for being who they are, and for doing what they do.  Not only did we want to have this auction to help JustWorld with the important work they are doing all over the world, we also wanted to raise awareness about the challenges that face children in developing nations.  We hope that our effort can help JustWorld International and disadvantaged children at least in some small way.”

JustWorld Executive Director Jessica Newman, herself a former Grand Prix competitor, was touched by the Desmarez family’s undertaking, saying, “I am so proud that the Desmarez family chose JustWorld as the beneficiary of this year’s ‘Foals from the Heart’ auction.  It is a huge step forward for the JustWorld movement world-wide.”

JustWorld International has worked to bring together the equestrian community and others with the goal of improving the lives of desperately poor children in the developing world.  With show jumping riders around the world signing up to become JustWorld Rider Ambassadors, Newman has mobilized some of the sport’s biggest names towards supporting JustWorld’s projects sites.

Through donations of prize money or proceeds from clinics, volunteering at the JustWorld International events and project sites, or simply by telling people about JustWorld’s projects, JustWorld Rider Ambassadors have chosen to make a difference, just like the Desmarez family.  With breedings to so many top stallions being donated, Vincent Desmarez and his family’s efforts have put JustWorld International on the forefront of the equestrian world stage.

For more information about JustWorld International, or to find out how you can become a sponsor or a rider ambassador, please visit www.justworldinternational.org or contact Executive Director Jessica Newman at jnewman@justworldinternational.org.

Founded in 2002, JustWorld International raises awareness and funds in the equestrian community to support humanitarian projects that benefit impoverished communities and children in the developing world.  Cooperating with local partners, JustWorld International implements sustainable, culturally sensitive education, health and vocational projects and currently has project sites in Brazil, Cambodia, Guatemala, Honduras, and Senegal.  For more information on JustWorld International and its upcoming fundraising events, please visit www.justworldinternational.org.

Media Contacts:

Jennifer Ward

Starting Gate Communications

Tel:  (613) 569-2423


Jessica Newman

JustWorld International

Cell:  (561) 346-0243


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