Due to our dedicated and generous volunteers, Hope Springs is able to offer a wonderful form of therapy to individuals with mental or physical disabilities. Working with our staff, volunteers make riding lessons fun and safe while students are empowered as they learn to control their horse. Giving freely of their time and themselves our volunteers are rewarded with proud smiles of accomplishment and pride from our riders.
What we do: We give therapeutic horseback riding lessons to riders with diverse disabilities. Instructors and volunteers work with our students to help groom and tack up their horse. During lessons, volunteers lead the horse or act as a side aide. Training is provided for volunteers - no experience is necessary.
What we need: If you help with riding lessons, we need a commitment for at least one lesson a week (about 1 ½ hours), preferably at the same time each week. It is important for our students to see familiar faces which allows us to develop relationships. If you are unable to make that time commitment, Hope Springs hosts a number of special events—camps, shows, and fundraisers—throughout the year where volunteers are always needed. You can help by soliciting items for our silent auction, pitching in during a community clean-up day, or stopping road traffic so horses can cross during our hunter pace event.
We are looking for enthusiastic and energetic people who enjoy working with animals, children, and adults. A sense of humor is always helpful, and while patience is needed, it is a skill acquired more easily than you might imagine.
We offer lessons Monday through Friday from 1:00 - 7:00 PM and Sundays from 10:00 - 5:00 PM. Our horses have Saturday as a day off.
Yes, training is provided for all volunteers, regardless of their previous horse experience. For volunteers who are experienced horsemen and women, training is necessary so that our clients see tasks performed in the same way by everyone at the barn. Our protocols offer our clients a consistent picture of how things are done at Hope Springs. For volunteers with no horse experience, the training session serves as an introduction to horses and equestrian therapy. During lessons, new volunteers are mentored by those with more experience.
Yes, volunteers must be at least 15 years old.
Yes, all volunteers must complete all state-mandated clearances before volunteer training.
To be a volunteer at Hope Springs is to be part of a wonderful form of therapy!
Hope Springs cannot function without the dedication and enthusiasm of volunteers. They make the lessons for each rider fun while empowering them to do their best. Hope Springs' volunteers are not only dedicated to the mission of Hope Springs but also dedicated to seeing our riders succeed. Each and every volunteer continues to remain a great example of volunteerism in today's society.
The responsibilities of a volunteer include tacking and grooming the horses, acting as a leader for the horse and/or being a side aide for the rider during each lesson.
In order to meet the needs of our riders, Hope Springs' volunteers attend at least one volunteer training session per year. This training is a hands-on session covering aspects of assisting the riding instructors. This training is a way for Hope Springs' staff to provide all the necessary tools to be an effective volunteer.
Fill out the following forms to be a Volunteer!