What inspired you to volunteer at the League?
In August 2020, we adopted our first dog, Charlie – a wonderful lab/pit bull mix – from the DFL Malone Center. (Joe had always been adamantly opposed to owning a dog – more on this later.) We were very impressed with the organization and the work it does. We found out about the Harmony Equine Center soon thereafter. In April 2021, Geneviève, wanting to learn more about horses, started volunteering at Harmony. After retiring at the end of May 2021 and finishing a few projects at home, Joe decided to join in on the fun as a maintenance/barn volunteer. We particularly enjoy being part of the 7:00 a.m. Friday shift. Here’s to all of you and to the rest of our volunteer brothers and sisters!
What’s one of the most important/surprising things you’ve learned volunteering OR what’s the funniest thing that has happened while volunteering?
Geneviève: As an arena assistant, I have learned that patience, compassion, and consistency are key when working with horses, as well as paying attention to horse tags. A few weeks after I started volunteering, I was very proud of myself for finally catching a difficult horse and bringing him up to the arena … only to find out I had caught the wrong horse … oops!
Joe: Maintenance shifts are full of surprises! One week, there’s a leaky waterer, the next may bring a broken fence post or a squeaky hinge. Still, it’s very rewarding to finish a shift knowing that you’ve made a difference.
Do you have a favorite quote you’d like to share?
“There’s something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man (or woman).” – Winston Churchill
“The strongest bond in history is between Dad and the pet he did not want.” – Internet find by the Price children
What do you do when you’re not volunteering at the League?
Geneviève loves to read mysteries and anything related to horses. She enjoys sewing and cooking food from around the world. Joe is an avid outdoor cook and makes the best smoked meats and fish in the state. He also enjoys fly fishing and playing on his tractor.
Anything else you’d like to share?
We have been thoroughly impressed with the staff at Harmony. Everyone working here is always very friendly and helpful to the volunteers. Their willingness to explain, answer questions, and then step back and observe the new learning as it’s put to practice is exemplary. They are truly amazing people!