Volunteers are the most important part of the team. Training sessions are held every second month to learn how to support riders with special needs in the equine activities and helping with Ther-a-Playdates. Check the EVENTS page to see the published dates and times.
The Basic topics include:
- Grooming: the proper use of tools, care of tools and names of tools. Handouts are available
- Tacking up with English saddles, Western saddles, Aussie Stock Saddles and Vaulting surcingle are all practiced showing safety tips and fitting concerns for rider and horse.
- Leading and Side Walking (shown above) during lessons take special focus and agility. How the games astride the horse help the rider, how to communicate and report back.
- Shadowing/serving the children both autistic and their siblings and parents during Ther-a-Playdates and Camps. Important safety tips are shared.
- Orientation of facility, the tack room, stalls, storage, hay loft, safety equipment/features and location of records and supplies.
- Documents for the volunteers, the riders and the horses are presented and explained.
- Horse and Equipment Care, using Equine Canada Standards.
“ABOVE AND BEYOND” TRAINING & CERTIFICATION
Tellington T-TOUCH workshops by Olga Comea are presented 1-2 times a year for volunteers when funding is available. The method is used to help volunteers get to know the horses and to detect any issues with soreness or imbalance. The touching techniques are relaxing for the horses and reinforce the trainer-horse bond.
The Tellington Method is comprised of four components:
- Gentle body work called Tellington TTouch comprised of circular touches, lifts, and slides;
- Movement exercises in “The Playground for Higher Learning;
- Specific harnesses and other equipment;
- Intention with the realization that you can “Change Your Mind & Change Your Animal.”
STANDARD FIRST AID & CPR certifications are made available to volunteers with 100-200 hours of service when funding is available.
NCCP – National Coaching Certification Program can be available to volunteers with 200 + hours of service when funding is available.
PATH – Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemen training and certifications partial funding when available.
To see the next training dates, check out the Events page.