The MEXICO Report just announced the “2013 Real Heroes of Mexico.” This year’s book showcases 30 profiles of those making a difference in Mexico. We, at Jaltemba Bay Life, are thrilled to announce that George and Loretta Leavitt, founders of Jaltemba Equine Education Project (J.E.E.P.) in La Peñita, are among those being recognized.
The Real Heroes of Mexico project was created in 2012 by Susie Albin-Najera, the creator and editor of The MEXICO Report, an internationally recognized blog showcasing everyday good news about Mexico. The project was launched in order to showcase the true champions of Mexico, the unsung heroes in the community and those celebrating Mexican culture through their goodwill efforts, bravery, inspirational stories, sacrifices and hard work. From fundraising and creating healthy eating programs, to education and healing the sick in rural communities, this one-of-a-kind effort showcases their acts of kindness, their achievements and dedication.
“The nominees that came through this year were phenomenal again and their stories never cease to amaze,” said creator of the project, Susie Albin-Najera. “It’s truly rewarding to be able to bring these stories to life and this project allows for others to learn about and celebrate their outstanding efforts and the work they are doing. These are the real heroes and champions of Mexico.”
Jaltemba Equine Education Project (J.E.E.P.) was established in December 2012 by George and Loretta Leavitt to help large animals like horses, donkeys and mules who are ill, malnourished or being mistreated in Jaltemba Bay, Nayarit, Mexico.
The project began when eight starving horses were discovered near La Peñita. George and other volunteers immediately started raising the necessary funds and working with the owners to surrender these unwanted animals. All eight horses were successfully rescued and given emergency medical care and a special diet. Sadly, the strong and gentle leader, appropriately named Chance, passed away five days after the rescue. He was buried on a 3-acre property in La Peñita generously donated by the Leavitts. This parcel is currently being developed into the Hilltop Refugio, a permanent place for rescued equines.
After months of rehab, the rescue horses were finally healthy enough for George and Loretta to slowly begin breaking them in. In May, they selected a few dedicated neighborhood kids to be instructors-in-training and each one was assigned to a specific horse. They are learning how to care for and handle the horses, and in the future they will help teach new students how to do the same.
In June, their exciting educational program for adults and children in the community came to fruition as the J.E.E.P. team introduced animal touch, interaction and therapy to 12 special-needs children from the Centros de Atención Múltiple #9 in Las Varas. And a very exciting day it was!
Soon, the general public will be able to visit the site and help care for these animals.
To learn more about the J.E.E.P. organization, read their latest stories, make a donation or sponsor a rescue horse, please visit Jaltemba Equine Education Project (J.E.E.P.)
You can learn more about the other awardees or order your copy of the “2013 Real Heroes of Mexico” on The Mexico Report.
A sincere congratulations to all of this year’s awardees!