We Can Ride is always looking for volunteers to donate their time and talent. Whether you are looking for an on-going commitment or a short-term opportunity, volunteering with We Can Ride will always be a memorable and rewarding experience. The time and effort donated by volunteers truly make a difference in the lives of our clients and horses. We appreciate all that our volunteers do for our organization, and know that we could not do it without them. Below we have answered some of the most common questions about volunteering with We Can Ride.
What kind of time commitment do you ask of volunteers?
We ask volunteers to commit to 1-3 hours per week for a minimum of 4 weeks, but preferably for a complete session. These hours should be in the same class every week. If you are unable to commit to volunteering every week, we encourage you to volunteer as a substitute. As a designated substitute, the volunteer coordinator will schedule you as needed according to your availability.
What are the requirements to volunteer?
You do not need any previous experience working with horses or people with disabilities to be a volunteer with We Can Ride. A training session will be provided prior to your first time volunteering and special training sessions are offered for other volunteer positions throughout the year.
- Volunteers must be at least 14 years old.
- A class volunteer should be able to walk for at least one hour without fatiguing, be able to jog for very short distances, be able to walk with his/her arm (one at a time) above shoulder height and be able to support a modest amount of weight.
- For the safety of all, We Can Ride reserves the right to determine a volunteer’s fitness for the role.
What kind of volunteer opportunities do you have?
Sidewalkers • Sidewalkers work with the client by walking alongside the horse during class. They help the client understand the instructor’s directions, achieve balance, independence, and reach personal goals.
Leaders • Leaders are responsible for control of the horse during class. They warm up the horse before class, secure the horse during mounting and dismounting, and then lead the horse during class. Volunteers must be a sidewalker for one session (8 weeks) before having the opportunity to become a leader.
Barn Aides • Barn Aides are responsible for catching, grooming, and tacking the horses for lessons, and need to arrive an hour early for each lesson. Volunteers must be a leader for one session (8 weeks) before having the opportunity to become a barn aide.
Feeders • Horse feeders have a year round responsibility. They are responsible for feeding horses, mucking stalls and other duties as assigned by the barn manager.
Barn Maintenance • We Can Ride needs volunteers throughout the year to help with barn and facility maintenance.
Special Events • During the course of the year, We Can Ride is involved in numerous special events where we are in need of extra help. We welcome your smile and extra hands on deck as we spread the word about We Can Ride throughout the state and the metro-community.
Fundraisers • We Can Ride has fundraisers throughout the year to help fund our programs and care for our horses. Volunteers sit on planning committees, spread the word about events, and help gather donations and sponsorships from the community to make our events a success. They may also work the day of the event with other special event volunteers.
Office Assistance • We sometimes need help in the We Can Ride office. Volunteering here might include stuffing envelopes, filing, labeling newsletters, filling up goodie bags for special events and other opportunities.