Washington native Cathy Olson has been honored as Save a Forgotten Equine’s (SAFE) December Volunteer of the Month in recognition of four years of consistent service that includes working barn shifts and performing night shift, various clerical tasks, editing the weekly volunteer update, and staffing the SAFE booth at public events.

Cathy started volunteering for SAFE in fall 2013 on an afternoon chores shift. When a change in career and job schedule prevented her from being able to commit to a regular weekly shift, she continued to fill in when she could and helped with special events. She missed being around horses, so she started a night check shift, and then started helping the volunteer manager with clerical tasks.

She says she started volunteering with SAFE when she became an empty-nester with time on her hands. “My riding instructor mentioned SAFE needed volunteers, so I attended a fall open house and met a beautiful horse named Phoenix right off the bat, who was the unofficial greeter at SAFE in Woodinville, and that sealed the deal.”

Cathy says she is especially drawn to the companion horses, because she sees so much potential and opportunities in loving a horse who is no longer able to carry a rider. While she hasn’t ridden herself for several years, she considers volunteering with SAFE a great way to stay involved with horses. “It can be sad to see the various circumstances of why horses come to SAFE, but it is uplifting to know we can make such a difference in their lives and help them find their happily ever-after forever home.”