Marie and Prince

Lifelong Bellevue resident Marie Jainga has been named as the Save a Forgotten Equine’s January Volunteer of the Month. She was selected for this honor because of her tremendous work ethic, her unfailingly positive attitude and her willingness to take on extra responsibilities.

Marie has always been an animal lover and has had animals since she was a little girl. Currently, her family is happy to include an adopted cat and a rescued German Shepard.

When Marie’s second child left for college in the fall of 2016, she was not ready to be an empty-nester. Marie says, “I decided I needed to do something to get me out of that slump, so one day I did a Google search for volunteer opportunities related to animals, and SAFE popped up.” She began volunteering in July 2017 on a barn chore shift and soon added a night check shift to her schedule. “I get the best of both worlds, working with horses and being with a great group of volunteers, and then the quiet serene barn at night with just the horses.”

Marie finds it almost impossible to choose a favorite SAFE horse, but she does love spending time with Prince, a Morgan gelding, who she calls the “Fabio” of the SAFE herd.

“I had always been in the mindset that to exercise a horse they should be ridden, but through SAFE I have gained an appreciation and understanding of companion horses and the loving care that they need to feel healthy and loved is just as important. I am so thankful for all that I have learned and will continue to learn from the wonderful people I have met at SAFE.”