Each week, Heartland benefits from the generosity of over 150 volunteers. Without the collective dedication of our volunteers, Heartland simply wouldn’t exist! Our volunteer team includes students, professionals, stay at home parents and retirees who all come together to share their skills, talents and energy for the common purpose to improving the lives of individuals with disabilities.
During the school year, the majority of Heartland’s lessons are held Monday through Thursday from 4:30pm to 7:30pm. We have a few lessons during the week in the daytime. Typically, daytime lessons are held between 10:30am and 12:30pm. We also have hippotherapy sessions on select weekdays between 9:00am and 4:00pm
During the summer, Heartland holds all abilities summer camps. Summer camps are scheduled every other week throughout summer. Volunteers are typically needed between 9:00am and 2:00pm on weekdays.
Please note we are NOT open on the weekends.
Sidewalkers offer assistance and/or stability to our riders by walking beside the horse during lessons. They also observe and interact with the rider and serve as an extra set of eyes and ears for the instructor. Sidewalkers are paramount in keeping riders safe and engaged in the lesson! All new volunteers must complete sidewalker training prior to volunteering at Heartland
A leader assists a rider in controlling and maneuvering their horse throughout the lesson. The leader is always focused on the horse to ensure the safety of the rider. In addition, leaders also groom and tack their assigned horse before the start of the lesson. All volunteers who are interested in becoming a horse leader must first sidewalk in classes for a minimum of 8 weeks before they are eligible for leader training.
Barn Assistants help prepare the horses and equipment for lessons. In addition to working with the horses, barn assistants also help and direct leaders in the grooming and tacking process as needed. Volunteers who are interested in becoming a barn assistant must first lead in classes for a minimum of 16 weeks before they are eligible for barn assistant training.