Our STaR Volunteers
Our STaRS Volunteers
Despite the great instructors, horses, and donors, STaRS could not do a fraction of what it does were it not for the unwavering support it receives from its dedicated, hard-working and enthusiastic volunteers. Our STaR volunteers' work is essential for each and every STaRS ride. Many of our riders require up to four volunteers per ride; that is, one to get the horse ready, one to lead the horse, and two to walk beside the horse and rider. They can be easily spotted when they are wearing their bright reflective STaRS vests.
Become a STaRS Volunteer!
We are always happy to see new faces and would love to hear from you about joining our STaRS volunteer roster! The following information is intended to help you understand the role of a volunteer in a therapeutic riding setting so you can determine if we are a good fit for you. We want all of our volunteers to enjoy their time with us!
What STaRS Needs
Volunteers are an integral part of the therapeutic riding team and we need people who are interested in helping children/adults with physical, mental and emotional disabilities. While interest in horses is preferred, experience with them is not a requirement. No matter the age, volunteer must be fit and able to follow direction well. Whether you have horse experience or not, potential volunteers go through a training session that explains all procedures during a typical lesson.
Our lessons range from 30 to 45 minutes. We generally ask that our volunteers be able to commit at least two hours per week (to help with lesson preparation and post-lesson clean up) for a period of ten weeks. This helps to build a strong and cohesive team, and allows our riders to get to know you!
Horse leader: Responsible for leading horses during lessons (previous horse experience
an asset). As a leader, the volunteer’s responsibility is to pay attention to the horse and follow the directions of the instructor. In case of emergency, the leader is responsible only for the horse and following directions from the instructor.
Sidewalker: Responsible for physical, emotional support of the rider. A sidewalker’s responsibility is as a liaison between the instructor and the student, as required. Duties include spotting the rider or performing various holds to ensure they remain on the horse, relaying directions from the instructor, assisting with exercises, etc. In case of emergency, the sidewalker is responsible only for the rider and following directions from the instructor.
Fundraising: Help with fundraising events, public awareness, etc. STaRS is very open to community or university groups running their own fundraisers of any size for the benefit of STaRS. We will help with materials and volunteers!
Must be fourteen years or older.
Be free of major injuries/health problems.
First aid certification is an asset (not required).
Police records check (http://vancouver.ca/police/organization/records-checks-fingerprinting/index.html). STaRS will provide a letter of request.
If you want to be part of this amazing team, the first step is to complete a Volunteer Application Form:
Once the processing of your Volunteer Application Form is complete, we will contact you and will ask you to schedule a Volunteer Orientation Session, which is offered once a month at the barn.