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2019 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Save A Forgotten Equine

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animal Protection & Welfare, Animals

Mission: Our mission: To rescue, rehabilitate, and retrain horses facing neglect or abuse and provide them with the best opportunity for a permanent home and a lifetime of safety.

Results: Over 250 horses rescued, rehabilitated, and retrained since 2005.

Target demographics: horses facing neglect, abuse, or starvation

Direct beneficiaries per year: 24 horses rescued and 23 horses adopted out

Geographic areas served: Pacific Northwest

Programs: Horse Rescue & Rehoming SAFE Horsemanship Program Community Outreach Program Serenity Fund Mayday Emergency Fund

Community Stories

156 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Allison M.2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

SAFE is an amazing place to volunteer! The organization operates with unbounded integrity in all areas. It is truly a joy to be involved with them and I feel valued as a contributor to the first-class care system that SAFE has established.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

SAFE is a place that not only rescues horses in need, but helped me in being a place where I felt at home again.

Review from Guidestar

2 Mariah L.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a big step forward in my recovery from a truly dark half-decade of my life, I decided to start volunteering at SAFE in summer of 2017. I've followed SAFE since I was 13 (I'm 24 now)--even visiting one of their opening houses at their old location. When I'd learned that they had moved to Redmond, I simply couldn't wait to sign up for volunteering there. I signed up for Tuesday's PM chore shift.

Doing so, truthfully, has been a massive benefit to my life and still rather fragile-but far more stable-mental health. It has helped me find camaraderie when I thought I never would; has helped me make new friends when I thought it wasn't possible; has helped me come out of my shell and above all else: It allows me to change lives, via the horses in our care. I help fill once famished bellies with grain; clean the paddocks of horses who used to live in filth; and show love and stability to horses who either have forgotten, or never received, one or both.

Even on the Tuesdays where I feel like I just can't take another second of being in public, or interacting with anyone, SAFE always ends those days on a positive and optimistic note. This is all thanks to my wonderful covolunteers, SAFE's amazing volunteer community and our dedication to giving these rescued horses a SAFE place to recover and move on to a new and better life.

Review from Guidestar

Sarah V.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I’ve only been volunteering with SAFE since January of 2019, but I’ve worked with other equine charities over the past 25 + years, and I can say without a doubt that SAFE is the most organized, well-run, safety-conscious, and horse-centered among them. Lots of rescue organizations have passion, but combining that with smart leadership, organization, and constant improvement is what sets SAFE apart. Volunteers are thoroughly and continually trained in horse care and handling, regular clinics with equine professionals provide the chance for volunteers, horses, and members of the public to learn good horsemanship, and strict protocols are enforced to promote volunteer safety and horse health.

Beyond merely turning abused and neglected horses into healthy and well-fed ones, SAFE puts a foundation of training into the horses such that their behavior, quality of life, and value to adopters ensures they will have a long and happy life (whether they are able to be adopted as riding horses or “pasture pets”). This organization stands by their work and horses, taking back into care those that were previously adopted but fell on hard times, making tough but humane decisions to ease the suffering of horses when necessary, and setting strict operational boundaries so that they do not overextend themselves into the unsustainable behavior that can easily be the downfall of animal rescue organizations.

In the time that I’ve been a volunteer, I’ve been embraced into an amazing community of passionate and like-minded people who care deeply about the horses in our care. Highly recommend this organization.

Review from Guidestar

Jackie Dodds L.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started as a foster home for the horses in 2012. The more SAFE people I met the more I wanted to help. The more I helped, the more I learned about the organization, their mission, their integrity, their passion and their process. They respect and appreciate the volunteers and are devoted to the horses. I am proud to be a part of SAFE.

Review from Guidestar

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Over 5 years ago I became a foster home for SAFE horses. I was very impressed with the care they provided for the horses even though they were off-site. As time went by, I began to spend more time at the barn. The more I learned about SAFE, the more I wanted to help. I still have foster horses, but now I also donate financially and volunteer as often, and in as many ways as I can. This is a well run organization which puts the horses first, is conscious of costs, appreciates and respects volunteers. I am grateful and proud to be a member of the SAFE family.

Catherine N.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This place has helped me learn as a person and a horse person. To be able to help give these horses a new life, is incredibly rewording thing to me. The horses always come first. They are able to learn to forgive and overcome their past. We know that if the horses want to fight for the life that they deserve, we will fight right along side them.

Review from Guidestar

1

Donor

Rating: 5

I've been a silent contributor to this fantastic organization! I've visited the farm, several times, even brought my grandchildren there to see all the beautiful horses! I've never met a more dedicated group of people, and the love and care they show all these prescious animals is without question! SAFE is the only horse rescue I refer people too, for questions, rescues, help with their own animals, and even adopting. My love for this nonprofit is profound!

Review from Guidestar

1 Julie V.2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have volunteered at SAFE for over three years now. From the beginning, I have been extremely impressed by how well the horses are treated and rehabbed. Not only that, SAFE is an excellent organization from a business standpoint, run by amazing people. What’s even better is that I was able to adopt one of their horses. SAFE has truly changed my life and my horse’s for the better.

Review from Guidestar

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started volunteering at SAFE with no horse experience, just a love of them. My shift leads and barn managers trained me and helped me to achieve my goals. I became a shift lead myself and continue to work on improving my chores and horse handling skills. I’ve been with SAFE for two years now and am still in awe that there is a place that wants to help me grow in my skills and encourages us volunteers to provide feedback and become personally involved.

Review from Guidestar

1 Samantha J.2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I began volunteering @ SAFE almost 4 years ago. I knew I wanted to do something physical and at the same time help animals in need. I hit the jackpot when I found SAFE. This organization is run with the utmost care and responsibility for all involved, horses and volunteers alike. They have an excellent staff that exhibits a breadth of experience and compassion for our horses. Making the tough decisions when they have to, always with the horse’s best interest at heart. It’s such a joy to watch these horses and their transformations, both physically and emotionally. To know that they know, they are now safe and able to live their best lives is a gift I will always be grateful for. I am so proud and honored to be working with such an outstanding organization and group of people. They have changed my life in the best way possible.

Review from Guidestar

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am continually amazed by Save A Forgotten Equine! From the volunteers, staff and board members to the love and compassion that this organization has to support its mission daily. I am proud to have been a long time volunteer and donor. I have seen first hand unbelievable transformations from horrible physical and mental distress put upon the horses that make their way to SAFE. Through rehabilitation the light in their eyes, the spark in their soul, and the regain of human trust is an experience to witness. I am proud of SAFE and their exceptional transparency, connection with the community, drive to educate and most of all the can do attitude of the entire program. It takes a village to make miracles happen to those without voices. SAFE makes those miracles happen every day.

Review from Guidestar

1 Cathy O.2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started volunteering for SAFE almost six years ago. The transparency of SAFE is incredible, one just needs to read the annual reports to get a sense of that. Staff has always been open and willing to share information and explain situations whether it is concerning the care and feeding of horses or related to facilities.

I am so proud to be a part of this organization. As a volunteer I have been supported and encouraged and have a deep sense of belonging and feeling appreciated. It is truly a blessing to be a small part of helping to create so many happily ever afters for equines and humans alike.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been a part of this nonprofit since 2013. I am amazed at how it has grown with volunteers, facilities operations and the continued success of our horses being rehabbed and adopted. I am proud to be a part of this operation every time I arrive on site. Amazing people with amazing results. Our horses are so blessed to pass through our gates. Well done Save a Forgotten Equine!

Review from Guidestar

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I’ve been volunteering for this organization for over 5 years. The leadership and volunteers are continually striving to be a strong, transparent and respected organization. That’s why I stay! SAFE has a strong outreach program that helps horse owners KEEP their horses and reduce the number of horses needing to be rescued. That’s forward thinking!

Review from Guidestar

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Having been a donor, volunteer, employee, and adoption alumni, I can confidently say that I have seen just about every side of SAFE- and they all CONTINUE to amaze.

The people here are phenomenal; giving, caring, and dedicated to the horses, community, and to one another. The Governing Board, Operations Council, and Staff all work together to ensure that the organization stays responsible to it's mission and donors, sustainable for it's future and the future of the horses, and dedicated to the happiness and education of the volunteers.

From Rehab to Rehome, the horses that pass through SAFE's barn doors are treated with love and kindness, but also given an education and skillset that will keep them (and their future family!) safe and healthful for all of their years.

Supporters and Donors can. In just a few steps, see all there is to know about where funds come from, how they are allocated for budgeting, what they are spent on, and why. The transparency the organization offers, not only financially, but in regards to the care, training, joys, and heartbreaks of equine rescue, is incredible and really sets SAFE apart from many animal rescue organizations.

SAFE brought me to my "heart horse", and SAFE remains my "heart place".

Review from Guidestar

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am always blown away by this no. Profit. They have 100% transparency. Their heart is in the right place. Giving horses a better and new life. They go above and beyond just food and water. They rehabilitate, train and shower these animals with love. Diligence goes into finding just the right home for these animals. Not just the first person that shows up. One walk around this farm can tell you just how happy and healthy these horses are. Safe is made up of the best volunteers and staff. It takes a village and that village is strong at Safe.

Review from Guidestar

2 Cjmcmillen

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I came for the horses, I stayed for the people. This is truly one of the best organizations I’ve seen. The professionalism, dedication, knowledge of what it takes to rehabilitate, train and find the right match to give these horses the best home possible is outstanding. They not only have given their hearts to these horses, but they also help the volunteers to achieve whatever goals they may have to get involved in the world of horsemanship.

SAFE is the reason I get up every day.

Review from Guidestar

hellojet

Board Member

Rating: 5

Completely impressed with the genuine dedication of the staff to making a difference in the lives of horses and one of the strongest volunteer communities I've ever seen.

Review from Guidestar

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have volunteered with this organization and have witnessed the miraculous for nine years transformation of horses. Being a horse lover, this makes.my heart xtremely happy.

What I didn't anticipate was the amazing way the organization touches the lives of the people who volunteer here. They become family. I see them come together to daily to tend to the well-being of the horses as well as the organization and the community it supports & unites.

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Bear C.

Donor

Rating: 5

I've been involved with SAFE for 5 years, mainly as a sponsor, but also with some of the work parties. Every volunteer and staffer has one goal, to provide a safe and loving home to horses that often have not known such a thing. Top notch organization full of caring people.

Review from Guidestar

Previous Stories

Donor

Rating: 5

I've been a supporter of SAFE for about 3.5 years and have watched countless amazing transformations of starving, neglected horses brought back to health. Animals that have suffered so much, become trusting again. The horses are not only nursed back to health, but go on to receive training so that they can be adopted into loving forever homes. SAFE is mainly staffed by volunteers and is fully funded through charitable donations. They use the money wisely and stretch every dollar. The facility is well maintained and the horses receive the best of care. A++++++

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteer for SAFE ,have previously owned thoroughbreds trained in dressage and would like to state the horses at SAFE receive the best of care. Starving horses are rehabilitated to beautiful horses and then adopted as riding or companion horses. Before and after photos on the SAFE website show the accurate story.

equuspnwd

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I got involved with SAFE initially because of its transparency. Having an accounting background, numbers are really important to me. Knowing where every dollar goes and seeing every detail posted on the internet for anyone to see makes all the difference to me. I'm now in my seventh year volunteering with SAFE. My "career" has been one of the most rewarding of my life. Watching horses transform from severely undernourished (sometimes skeletal) and sometimes completely unhandled into worthwhile equine citizens has been a wonderful journey. An added benefit is the camaraderie that develops among volunteers caring for these horses. There simply are not enough superlatives to describe the quality of this non-profit.

Review from Guidestar

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Where to begin? My life has changed in so many ways since I began volunteering with SAFE five years ago. Although I'd ridden horses through my childhood and into my twenties, I really knew nothing about caring for them. Volunteering with SAFE has given me the opportunity to learn about feeding, about vet care and equine diseases, about farrier needs, about saddles and bridles and blankets and boots, about farm management . . . there's always more to learn and there are always kind, patient teachers at our barn.

The level of care our horses receive is top notch. Every possible and reasonable comfort is provided. Our farm is well fenced into paddock areas for daily turnout for all horses. The acreage takes on park-like beauty in the spring and summer, in large part due to another group of dedicated volunteers on our Facilities Team. Our horses' training is extensive and fostered by a select team of capable volunteer riders under the leadership of Operations Director Terry.

Once a SAFE horse finds its forever home, the horse and its adoptive owner are visited regularly by a SAFE volunteer to check on the horse's well-being, to see if the adoptive owner has any issues or questions.

As a long-time donor, I take great pride in the careful oversight of funds to insure horses are cared for as well as possible within our means. I'm proud to be one of 150 active volunteers at SAFE and look forward to many more years volunteering with and contributing to SAFE.

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Nicky De R.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Safe is made up of such a wonderful, dedicated team of people who are truly passionate about horses and making a difference to the lives of these horses. The care taken throughout all stages of rescuing horses, rehabilitation, training and finding forever homes is incredible. I am privileged to be part of such special nonprofit. I am also an active donor and try to do as much as I can to make a difference to the horses we work with. Anyone can help and horse experience is not required.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

How and where do I begin to describe the most incredible and well run non-profit that I can imagine? This organization touches many, many people and horses on so many levels, and in so many ways. SAFE began in 2005 with a group who bonded together to rescue a horse from a Washington feedlot and has developed and grown in a short period of time to what I believe should serve as an international model for Equine Rescue. Having always chosen to rescue or adopt the many animals I have had over the years, I began my search two years ago to adopt my first horse and began looking at Equine Rescue organizations in the Pacific Northwest. Although I came across many great places, nothing compared to what I found at SAFE. Their board members, dedicated team of community professionals, incredible staff, and around 200 well trained volunteers work around the clock to ensure successful rehabilitation and training for their horses who eventually go on to find their forever homes. I decided to sponsor a horse I was interested in learning more about at SAFE, but thanks to Terry, SAFE’s Operations Director and horse matchmaker extraordinaire, I ended up with a different horse named Sierra, who could not be more perfect for me. One of the many wonderful things about SAFE is their focus on finding a forever match for their horses and wanting to make sure you end of with the right fit for your goals and skill set. Their inspection process is thorough, serving both horse and human well, and their adoption rate success speaks for itself. SAFE offers ongoing continued training workshops throughout the year for anyone interested in attending and there are volunteer opportunities for just about any type of job you can imagine doing. I have loved being a monthly sponsor for SAFE horse Prince and it has been heartwarming to follow his progress on SAFE's website! From the top on down SAFE is run with integrity and transparency and goes far beyond the extra mile to make life for their equines special. I feel so fortunate to be part of the SAFE family and am beyond grateful for the friendships I have made there!

Lori M.1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I started out over 2 years ago volunteering my skills as a licensed Equine Massage Therapist for this organization. I was so impressed with how well they took care of the horses. Not just the basics food and water but much more. Looking out for the the best care they could provide for these animals. I adopted a horse from them. Miss Scarlett. An 18 year old wuarterhorse who has broke her withers before coming to SAFE. She is such a wonderful addition to my herd. This is an amzing organization. They are what other rescues need to strive to be. The leaders in their field. I now am so blessed to be working as their Barn Manager. The best job in the world.

CKintzley

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It is a honor to be a part of such an amazing organization who is dedicated to providing a safe haven for horses that have suffered horrible consequences in their lives. SAFE has wonderful caring, dedicated and compassionate volunteers who make a difference every day. It isn't just feeding, mucking stalls and riding. It is also community outreach, awareness, fundraising, and being stewards to help others in the equine community. SAFE's complete transparency lets the donors know exactly where their donations are be used. I would give them 1000 stars if I could!

Jeanne S.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a retired non horse person, I chose to volunteer at SAFE because it provided the opportunity to learn new skills(Equine) and get physical exercise while enjoying the outdoor life. I stay at SAFE because of the integrity of the leadership and stewardship of all donations. I keep volunteering because of the strong bonds of friendship...both human and horses.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering at SAFE for nearly 6 years now. I am so proud of this organization, not only because of its amazing mission and its unwavering dedication to our equine friends but because the organization stays true to its values, no matter what. SAFE's commitment to transparency, sustainability, and quality are clearly apparent, and the volunteers and staff are a such a dedicated group of caring folks with huge hearts. It is simply an amazing organization!

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am very proud to say that I am a volunteer and a financial supporter of Save a Forgotten Equine or SAFE. This organization is very devoted to and passionate about its mission, which is to rescue, rehabilitate, and re-home horses in need. The group of people that manages this organization are professional, energetic, talented, and genuine. They work tirelessly to ensure the organization is successful, healthy, and viable. I admire their devotion to this important cause!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved with SAFE in various capacities for several years. Having worked with many non-profit organizations, I speak from experience when I say that it is one of the most ethical, sane, and well-run groups out there. I have known many animal rescue groups that had good intentions but ended up being none of those things...SAFE just shines in it's unwavering commitment to the animals and also to it's people.
It is awfully hard to run such a large organization on a shoestring budget and volunteer labor - SAFE makes every dollar and every hour stretch to it's maximum benefit.
I am proud to contribute both money and time to SAFE, and wish I could do more. If you want to find a great community and help horses, this is as good a choice as you can make.
No organization is perfect, and a difficult mission always includes some struggles - but I have seen SAFE take on every one of them with candor, empathy, patience, heart, and integrity - the same way they treat their horses. I admire SAFE's past and look forward to it's future!

Jessica F.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

SAFE is an amazing rescue to volunteer for, it is a great community of people with the same purpose. To be a witness to the transformation of these horses is so beautiful and inspiring to see, it is done with so much love, care and dedication.

Julie W.4

Client Served

Rating: 5

I've been involved with SAFE for years now and am still constantly impressed with the dedication this team has for their mission, the unendless creativity for solving problems, and how they turn heartbreak onto hope for so many (not just horses) but people needing a community and families seeking a four legged friend. This group runs a top notch non-profit more professionally than many businesses!

I consider myself incredibly fortunate to have adopted my own horse from SAFE last year. A filly whose owner surrendered her because they could not afford the vet bills, from a five day old severe T-post impalement to her neck, no one knew if she would survive the night when she arrived at SAFE. Fast forward to a horse SAFE fully rehabilitated and besides a scar that reminds us all, what could have been, she has a forever home and future.

Sara

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been a volunteer, donor, a past board member, and general fan of SAFE for many years now. SAFE is an amazing organization for so many reasons! Top-notch care of all animals is just the beginning. Each individual in their care receives an in-depth evaluation and personalized care and training so they will have the best chance at a successful adoption. Adopters are given a complete, and realistic, history of the horse (or as much info as SAFE has) so they know exactly what they are getting themselves in to. Beyond that, SAFE is committed to constant improvement in building a sustainable organization where people can joyfully give, or participate in meaningful work, at whatever their current level of engagement is. SAFE truly embodies great animal care, transparency, and organizational stewardship.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

After bouncing around a few other equine rescues, I found my "tribe" with SAFE. There are a lot of reasons SAFE has earned my ongoing support over the years including:

* A sustainable model to help horses through rescue, community outreach and education.

*SAFE routinely partners with animal control- helping encourage those organizations to remove horses from danger.

*SAFE provides not only basic care for their charges but honest evaluations and follows up with training to help horses successfully find homes.

* Financial transparency, fiscal responsibility and contingency planning

* Thorough screening of potential adopters to ensure a good match, follow-up visits, and a lifetime safety net to ensure they are never at risk again.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The people take amazing care of these neglected and abused horses finding them forever homes after getting them back to health

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I've been a volunteer, a donor, a Board member and a huge fan of SAFE for the past 8 years. I have the utmost respect for the quality of care, the training, and the careful rehoming they provide to the horses in their program. The staff are dedicated and knowledgeable. The Volunteers are hard working and compassionate, giving their time and their hearts to the horses in their care. If you are looking to adopt, volunteer, or donate...SAFE sets the bar for Responsible Rescue. Check them out!

Marie Siemens J.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Save A Forgotten Equine (SAFE) is a TOP NOTCH organization that I was so lucky to have found in a google search for animal volunteer opportunities. I began in June of 2017 with an orientation day for volunteers (led by an amazing volunteer Jane). I knew right away that this was the place I wanted to volunteer my time at. That next week I started on a PM Chore shift, and shortly there after was trained for Night Check by another amazing volunteer/staffer Melinda. The happiness and caring of the volunteers at SAFE is infectious. It is apparent that it is everyone's "Happy Place" that spends anytime there, and it's shown by the love and care that goes to each and every horse. The facilities is beautiful and is so well maintained by the facilities crew with so much caring love shown in every little detail. This wonderful organization is so very transparent in how they are run. It is run by only a handful of paid staff with a volunteer list of approximately 200 volunteers all wanting the very best for each and every horse. The volunteers have a family bond in the caring for one come goal... The horses. There is such a wealth of knowledge and all are willing to share that knowledge. I am soaking up everything I can learn and am so grateful for the experiences and opportunities that I have had in this past year.

jmorton19

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Absolutely 5+ Stars for SAFE - Save a Forgotten Equine.
SAFE is a marvelously well run non-profit - a great role model for transparency, super volunteer program - most everything is done by a volunteer crew of over 100 committed folks. Horse care and safety of horses and humans are the top priorities. SAFE trains dozens of volunteers in horse care and feeding, horse health, handling skills - it's a great way for a wanna-be horse person to get involved with horses. SAFE treats horses well. You will be learning with the best. Another benefit - I've made great friendships with fellow volunteers.

Previous Stories

Donor

Rating: 5

I first became a donor to SAFE when I heard about the great work they do to rescue, rehabilitate and find loving forever homes for horses in need. Two years ago I started volunteering and my esteem for SAFE just grows and grows. The commitment of the huge volunteer staff - over 100 including 70 weekly barn volunteers - is wonderful and a testament to the care and integrity with which SAFE operates. If I were an abused or neglected horse I would pray every day that SAFE would come and get me.