If you would like to volunteer, please enter your name, email, and phone number below and we will contact you and schedule you for an orientation.
Who may volunteer?
If you are willing to give your time in exchange for a rewarding and fun experience, we would love to have you. Can you make a commitment of at least 4 days per month? This is a general guideline for the minimum amount of time you should be able to commit to. We need reliable and consistent support. We need to rely on your commitment so that we can staff all the chores we need to complete. This is a guideline, not a rule. It is up to you to determine if you are able to make a consistent commitment. It is also extremely helpful if you can pick a day/days and stick to it. You must be 16 years of age to volunteer or be accompanied by an adult between the ages of 14-15. No one younger than 14 can volunteer however, you can organize a drive to collect items from our Wish List. You can ask your friends, relatives, neighbors, and classmates if they’d like to donate things such as blankets, towels, bags of feed, horse shampoo, household cleaning supplies, paper towels, toliet paper, etc. These donations are very helpful to us, since we use-up an enormous amount of supplies every year.
Community Service Work
We love to have students join us to fulfill community service hours, but this is approved on an individual basis and dependent on the applicant’s horse experience. Minors have to be accompanied by a parent or guardian at all times.
How do I become a volunteer?
After attending a volunteer orientation, you may schedule your volunteer dates. Please contact our Executive Director, Shawna Anderson, at 845-656-5365. This allows us to plan for coverage and special projects. If you can come the same day each week that is helpful to us, but not a prerequisite. However, you MUST attend an orientation prior to signing up or volunteering.
I have horse experience. Do I need to attend an orientation?
Yes, everyone, regardless of experience, must attend an orientation. You will be able to ask any questions you might have, receive a full tour of our facility, meet our horses and learn about the day to day chores.
Do I need previous horse experience?
No, horse experience is not mandatory but preferred, however, a willingness to learn and do real barn chores is a necessity.
Seems like a good time to mention this. Many people who volunteer or have children that want to volunteer may not have any horse experience. There are risks associated with working with any animal. Horses are no different. Because of their size, you could potentially be severely hurt if you do not follow all safety rules. While we are very careful, just being on the property has associated risks. Horses are generally very peaceful, but have a strong “fight or flight” instinct. Please read and understand all our rules & regulations and ask one of us if you aren’t sure of something. Never go into a paddock or stall where a horse you do not know is. Never do this unless you are authorized.
What is covered in the volunteer training orientation sessions?
Barn tour and meet the horses and onsite staff
Volunteer policies and procedures
Safety rules & regulations
Any of your questions
When do you need volunteers?
Our needs are year round. We are open Monday through Sunday. The earliest time we need volunteers is 8:00 a.m. and the latest is around 5:00 p.m. When completing the volunteer application packet, please be as specific as you can about your availability.
What is the commitment to volunteer?
We ask that you commit at least 4 days per month to volunteer (once a week) preferably the same day each week. Contact the Executive Director, Shawna Anderson, to set up a volunteer day.
*Please note that all NEW volunteers must attend orientation prior to their first visit. To be scheduled for orientation, fill out and submit the volunteer application.
Please try to stick to a minimum of 4 hours per visit so that we can plan any projects appropriately.
What will I be doing?
If you choose to work with the horses, you will be be doing farm chores. This involves cleaning out stalls, filling water buckets, giving out hay/grain, scooping poop, etc. It’s physical work and it’s hard. It’s also extremely rewarding. We ask you do not handle a horse unless you are supervised. There is so much to do without exposing you to a 1000 lbs animal if you are not familiar with them. There will be some bonding time with the horses as you progress. Sometimes it’s as simple as socializing a very scared horse, or leading a horse from one place to another. We do not want you to do any of that until you are familiar with our horses. There are other opportunities to volunteer with us, read on to find out about them.
Can I ride?
We do not ride the horses at Hi Hopes unless they are deemed safe as lesson horses. Most of these horses are rescue and we are not familiar with their backgrounds. If you are a trainer and are interested in volunteering your time training, please send your work qualifications along with your application.
Aside from being fun, volunteering provides the opportunity to receive rewarding personal experiences, fulfill community service requirements, learn new things, engage in good exercise and even develop lifelong friendships.
What other volunteer opportunities are there at Hi Hopes?
There are certain skills that we always need:
PR & Marketing/Newletter/Blog
Quarterly Volunteer Meetings
We have great opportunities for volunteers all the time. We need your help with our events, organizing our Annual HHTR Spring Fling, coordinating fundraising, creating communications, and so much more. Volunteers are what make our events possible! Please let us know if you are interested in helping us with any of the following: Public Relations, Marketing, Event Planning, Fundraising, Grant Writing, Education, and Operations. You can indicate your areas of interest on the Volunteer Application.
We look forward to meeting you and hearing about your interests in volunteering. We’ll be in touch with you shortly. Thank you for your interest!
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