Become a Volunteer



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Volunteer teaching a boy how to brush a horse.

HorseSense for Special Riders is always looking for volunteers. Listed below are some of the activities that we need help with. If you see any that interest you, or if you know of a person who is interested in becoming a rider, send us a quick note and we will get in touch with you. Also take a look at the Volunteer Application and Release for more details.

Volunteer Requirements

  • Attend a volunteer orientation each year
  • Be able to walk and jog in sand and uneven ground
  • Dress in appropriate and professional manner
  • Arrive 15-20 minutes before the lessons start
  • Assist with preparation before the lessons and barn clean-up following the lessons
  • Be able to consistently commit to attending lessons on the same evening each week, for an entire session
  • Side walkers must be 14 years of age or older and leaders must be 15 years of age or older

Lesson Volunteers

The lesson volunteers work directly with the instructors to provide assistance prior to and during lessons. The main responsibilities include participating in the lesson by leading the horse or side walking. When leading the horse, we ask that your main priority be on the horse. When side walking, we ask that you mainly pay attention to the rider. This allows for less confusion and the best possible lesson for our riders. 

Horse Leader

All horse leaders will arrive before sessions and stay afterwards to groom, tack up horses and put everything away for the night. Horse Leaders also can lead the horses during lessons. Leaders must have horse experience or have volunteered with HSSR for at least a year.

Side Walker

As a side walker you will assist the rider in following through with instructions to the best of their ability by walking next to them and providing hands on support if needed. No experience is necessary as you are supported and guided by the instructor.

About Lessons

Please wear sturdy footwear and barn appropriate clothing.

If you know you will be gone, please give at least a week's notice so the HSSR staff can find a sub. You can also call (608) 791-4868. Your rider is dependent on you to be there and subs are hard to find at the last minute.

HSSR will cancel lessons in weather extremes including, but not limited to temperature extremes, high winds, tornado warnings, severe thunderstorms or lightning. Call HSSR at (608) 791-4868 two (2) hours prior to your session for notification of cancellation. The answering service will have a recorded message indicating if lessons are cancelled.

Confidentiality is a policy that we adhere to, to the best of our ability, and we ask all that volunteers to adhere to this policy as well. We are leasing this facility from a private party. Please observe and respect the parking areas and the family’s privacy.

No pets please!