Would This Be A Good Place To Volunteer? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 05-07-2018, 08:13 PM Thread Starter
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Would This Be A Good Place To Volunteer?

I am looking for something to do this summer and I wanted to volunteer at this therapy riding for kids with special needs. They have already said I can but I was wondering if its a good idea... I have only had experience in actually riding a horse, never leading. I want to help but I don't want to hurt anyone or cause unneeded problems or scares. Do you think I should try it anyways?
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post #2 of 3 Old 05-07-2018, 08:29 PM
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Most therapy riding establishments are very careful to train new volunteers. If you have any reservations, ask the person in charge.
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Training riders and horses to work in harmony.
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post #3 of 3 Old 05-08-2018, 09:14 PM
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Yes, do try!!
Working with the disabled is not for everyone.
It is challenging and rewarding to see a rider accomplish something they so badly wanted...and worked so very hard for.
From riders who need a special lift to get astride, to those who run barrels and poles to others who do dressage, jump fences.
Everything you can imagine from so accomplished they ride in International Equestrian Games for the Disabled to basic beginners who go for a pony ride ride...

You'll learn a lot...
You start at the bottom of the responsibility position ladder and work hard to do more..proving yourself and your abilities.
Therapeutic programs will teach you how to lead, or "guard" a rider.
It is really important you walk in a particular position next to the horse and equally important if it is a hands-on needed rider you know where and how to apply your hands to their limbs.
The technical name I know is "side-walker" for those in that very important job and position.
The leader is called the "handler"....

Not all ride, some drive carts, some only come to pet the horse...........
English or western...
Being disabled and enrolled in a riding program...
The programs are open to all disabilities, all levels of being disabled..the mental to physical to emotional and combinations of several or all..
Challenging, but very rewarding.
The purest of emotion you will encounter from most participants...elation, frustration, tears of joy...

I was blessed to be part of a team that heard the first word ever spoken by a teenager...
She said "Pretty".... soon was "pretty horse".
Pretty amazing to be mute all your life and the joy of petting a horse broke through the barrier of communication.
Today that person...is a chatterbox!!

Go, try it.
See if volunteering your time is good for you, feels right...

The worst day is instantly better when shared with my horse.....
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