Information

Qualifications - UpReach Therapeautic Riding Center program volunteers must be at least 14 years old in order to participate as a leader or sidewalker. You must be able to walk with occasional jogging for 45 minutes to one hour (please let us know if you prefer to be scheduled in a walk only lesson). A minimum commitment of one hour per week for a six- or eight-week term is required. Volunteers must also attend a training session prior to leading and/or sidewalking. An additional Horses 101 training is recommended before leading in a riding session. Volunteers interested in participating in a driving lesson as a Header or Assistant must attend a Program Volunteer Training and a Driving Volunteer Training.

Apparel - For your safety, shoes with a closed toe and closed heel are required to be worn for volunteer training as well as walking/jogging in sessions. Avoid high heels. We recommend you tie up long hair and avoid wearing dangling jewelry or pants that drag on the ground. Dress appropriate to weather conditions. In the summer months, the barn stays relatively cool. Shorts of appropriate length are acceptable attire during summer months. During the winter months, the barn temperature stays relatively warm. Layers are suggested. Avoid clothes that restrict movement or are so baggy they could get caught in equipment. Also, please turn cell phone ringers off.

Attendance - Once you sign up to participate as a program volunteer, you are committed to attend each riding/driving session for the term. Please notify your instructor or the office as soon as possible if you are unable to volunteer at your scheduled day and time; this allows us time to find another volunteer to substitute. Your client depends on you! Please remember to record all your volunteer hours. Your time is very valuable to us.

Role Descriptions - The leader is responsible for guiding the horse during the session. The leader is asked to arrive 10-15 minutes early to check for last minute changes, get out necessary tack and prepare the horse for the riding session.

The sidewalker is responsible for walking or jogging next to the student during the session to ensure their safety and is often asked to participate in activities, directly interacting with the student through out the session. The instructor may ask the sidewalker to provide varying degrees of support to the student.