Let’s make eventing a place to belong for all

Let’s make eventing a place to belong for all

British Equestrian and its 18 member bodies, including British Eventing, have signed a unity pledge, committing to improving diversity, equality and inclusion throughout the equestrianism industry.

The pledge is committed to making equestrianism more representative of diverse communities and grow a welcoming community for all who are and respect for the horse, while promoting the benefits of equestrianism on mental and physical health and wellbeing.

“Equestrianism and the passion for horses is by its nature hugely diverse and open to all, regardless of age, gender, religion, ability or background,” says Jim Eyre, Chief Executive of British Equestrian.

“However, we know ethnically diverse communities and people from lower socio-economic backgrounds are under-represented across equestrianism and may not feel it is for them.

“If we are to thrive as an industry and open up participation for everyone to experience the unique joy horses bring, we have to do more to embrace our differences and recognise what can be possible when equality, diversity and inclusion is woven into our culture.

“While this is a strategic imperative for the Federation, it’s more about working to break down those barriers and creating a community where everyone truly feels they belong. Today marks the start of our commitment to doing just that. We look forward to working with partners and stakeholders on a number of research projects that will bring a strategy and an action plan, which will help us collectively deliver on our pledges.”

Work has already begun, with British Equestrian launching an extensive research project with AKD Solutions to understand the barriers that prevent people getting involved in equestrianism, particularly those from ethnically diverse communities and lower socio-economic backgrounds.

As part of this research, British Equestrian would love to hear from you about your experience. Be part of this groundbreaking research by visiting https://bit.ly/38BccEH.

“We intend not just to deliver a great research project but also to build long-standing relationships between communities and equestrian sport, providing greater awareness, breaking down barriers and bringing genuine people,” says Akin Thomas, CEO of AKD Solutions.