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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello! This is probably one of my very silly questions again but here we go

So after taking riding lessons at the barn for around 4-5 months, yesterday I got asked If I wanted to volunteer. I of course said yes, because not only can I learn more non-riding related stuff, but my lessons will now be free and I'll get to ride a different horse. I'll start from 8am, will be taking my lessons the same days I volunteer, and my parents can pick me up anytime. What type of stuff should I expect doing as a volunteer?

thank you!
 

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I would expect you would start with mucking stalls and maybe feeding. General clean-up. Maybe tasks like sorting out tack. After they are confident with your abilities, they might start having you move horses around, e.g. in and out of turnout. If they became very confident of your abilities, maybe they would have you work on the ground with some of the horses.

I would just be sure that you are actually getting the free lessons they have agreed to. I've heard of many (and seen a few) cases where someone was told they would get lessons in exchange for work, but they just kept getting put off ("Oh, we can't do your lesson today because the instructor has to leave early," "Oh, we can't do your lesson today because the lesson horse you were going to ride is lame," etc.). If they put you off more than two days in a row, I'd talk to them about it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I would expect you would start with mucking stalls and maybe feeding. General clean-up. Maybe tasks like sorting out tack. After they are confident with your abilities, they might start having you move horses around, e.g. in and out of turnout. If they became very confident of your abilities, maybe they would have you work on the ground with some of the horses.

I would just be sure that you are actually getting the free lessons they have agreed to. I've heard of many (and seen a few) cases where someone was told they would get lessons in exchange for work, but they just kept getting put off ("Oh, we can't do your lesson today because the instructor has to leave early," "Oh, we can't do your lesson today because the lesson horse you were going to ride is lame," etc.). If they put you off more than two days in a row, I'd talk to them about it.
Thank you so much! I'll for sure be keeping an eye on that. Thanks and have a nice day!
 

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I used to pay for my lessons until i couldn't afford them and I started doing just that! since lessons are worth $60, I have to work for a total of 6 hours (which is equivalent to $10) to get a free lesson. so please make sure they aren't overworking you!!!

since I didnt grow up in a barn or riding (i'm 15 and started riding two months ago..) I started off doing simple tasks like grooming and cleaning water buckets and filling them with water and as well as laundry. you might be asked to clean stalls or assort and clean tack along with the things i listed i began doing! I pick things up quickly so I lunge horses (again, with no experience doing it) at times, but if there's ever something you can't do please tell them as some places overwork or go over peoples limits..

be on top of them about the lessons because like the other comment stated, they might use excuses and just exploit you into doing work for them without the free lessons..
 

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I volunteer at an animal rescue and they have me doing things with all the animals. Not just the horses.
The non-horse related ones are:
clean out cats litter boxes
fill up cats water dishes
wash cats food dishes
bring straw to chickens/ducks/pigs
walk dogs
feed quail
bring lettuce to chickens
clean gunk out of automatic water troughs
Horse related chores:
water horses
groom horses
feed horses
wash tack
wash blankets
blanket horses
scrape mud off of legs
rotate horses through pasture
bring horses to arena to self exercise
hold horses for conformation pics.

Eventually she might have me exercise the horses a little more. I have found volunteering there, really great. I have learned a lot. She is super helpful, and she lets me watch her work with the horses, as she takes them through a desensitizing lesson and other things like that.

You should make sure that you ask lots of questions, so you know exactly how they want the job done. And you should make sure that you actually finish the job all the way, and not just do it halfway. If your instructor is busy with something, and you are waiting for her to give you your next chore. Find something to do! Whether that's grooming a horse, cleaning out a stall, or sweeping the aisle. Make sure you do something with your time.
One time my instructor was on the phone, so I grabbed a broom and swept out the aisle. She didn't say anything about it, but later when my mom came to pick me up. She said that she was really impressed, and a week later, my instructor told me that she hates having a dirty aisle. And she loves it when I sweep it, so now whenever I have some free time, I always make sure to sweep it our for her.

Hopefully you will enjoy volunteering there! I have had a lot of fun, and plan to continue for as long as I can. Good luck on your riding adventure!
 
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