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Back Country Horsemen of America Invites Other Groups to Join Them in Saving Trails for Equestrian Use

As the United States’ foremost advocate for trail riders not only in Washington, D.C., but also across the country, Back Country Horsemen of America has worked hard to keep public trails open for horse use. They attack the issue from every possible angle, including volunteering to open and repair trails, advising public lands managers, and meeting in person with town, state, and federal decision makers.

In fact, BCHA prevented the implementation of flawed trail classification standards that would have severely restricted trails and riding areas to recreational riding and pack stock use. The organization has also successfully worked to pass federal legislation that would preserve and protect riders’ rights on public land.

In addition, they are vigilant watchdogs representing the countless millions of horseback riders who enjoy recreating with their equine friends on our public lands, from the rugged terrain of the west to the urban parks of the east. These are advocacy issues that benefit the entire riding community.

Working Together Toward a Common Cause

Despite these successes, there is more to be done and further challenges to face. Knowing that many hands make light work and that there is strength in numbers, BCHA recognizes the need to widen its base of influence through partnerships with other organizations.

Strength in advocacy is about presenting correct facts to the right people at the right time and making a convincing case for the cause. It is also about gathering a large constituency base that is in basic agreement on a given issue. Back Country Horsemen of America knows that it needs the support of other organizations to grow their constituency base and therefore be even more effective in their negotiations with land managers and agency personnel.

For these reasons, BCHA is inviting other organizations of all kinds to join them in saving trails for equestrian use by becoming Advocacy Partners with BCHA. They feel that partnerships of this kind are critical for the continued advancement of equestrians’ right to ride on our public lands.

BCHA is a highly effective grassroots organization comprised of local and state chapters, affiliates, and at-large members to the national organization. Their efforts and dedication have put them in a unique position of respect and influence: not only do lands managers and decision makers recognize their high level of knowledge and experience, they actively and regularly seek out the opinion and assistance of BCHA and its member organizations.

When teamed up with Back Country Horsemen of America, other organizations benefit from BCHA’s exceptional position. Very few groups have built these valuable relationships with the people that make decisions, and so are not as able to represent their memberships in Washington, D.C., and state capitols as these important decisions are made.

Not only does a partnership with BCHA afford the benefits of their hard-earned esteem and connections, it adds that group’s voice to this common cause of all equestrians. It also gives these organizations’ leaders the opportunity to share with their membership information that, while they might not be aware it’s happening, has the potential to greatly impact their access to public lands.

Partner organizations’ dues are based on the amount of their annual budget, which entitles them to a website link on http://www.backcountryhorse.com that includes a brief description of their work, recognition in BCHA’s annual report to the membership, a one-time business card advertisement in BCHA’s newsletter (which has a circulation of over 11,000 nationally), a recognition press release sent to BCHA’s media contacts, and a 25% discount on advertising in the BCHA newsletter (some restrictions apply). For further information about BCHA’s Advocacy Partner Program, please contact their development office at 815-858-2220 or refer to their website at http://www.backcountryhorse.com.

About Back Country Horsemen of America

BCHA is a non-profit corporation made up of state organizations, affiliates, and at large members. Their efforts have brought about positive changes in regards to the use of horses and stock in the wilderness and public lands.

If you want to know more about Back Country Horsemen of America or become a member, visit their website: http://www.backcountryhorse.com, call 888-893-5161, or write PO Box 1367, Graham, WA 98338-1367. The future of horse use on public lands is in our hands!


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