Volunteering at Friends For Tomorrow, Inc. (FFT) is a wonderful and rewarding experience. The benefits are many; working as part of a team to help our students experience the joy that comes from participating in our therapeutic equine- and animal-assisted programs, learning new skills, doing something for your community, and feeling good about yourself.
Aside from being fun, volunteering provides the opportunity to meet like-minded people, often leading to lifelong friendships.
Requirements for Volunteering:
- Volunteers must be at least 14 years of age,
- Love children, horses and animals,
- Be available and willing to commit to one afternoon a week (we do not have any programs on the weekend) for the length of a session (generally 6-7 weeks long),
- Have reliable transportation,
- Be in good physical health as volunteering involves a lot of walking and lifting tack,
- Have completed the Volunteer Registration Forms and have a tour of the facility with a FFT staff member.
Other Frequently Asked Questions about Volunteering with us.
Volunteering with our Therapeutic Horseback Riding Program
As a Therapeutic Horseback Riding (TR) volunteer, we ask that you commit to one afternoon a week from 2:30 to 6:00pm (exceptions can be made for late school dismissals) for the length of a session. During the afternoon, you will be involved in the care of the horses and the barn, assisting children with their lessons, setting up games for lessons, tack cleaning or other activities to make our afternoon run successfully. Horse knowledge is a bonus, but not a prerequisite. We are happy to teach you the skills you need, at a pace that is comfortable for you.
All lessons are one-on-one so you will get the opportunity to get to know the students and engage with them while they work towards their goals on the horse. Our TR lessons run year-round in our indoor and outdoor arenas as well as on the trails that abut our host farm.
Volunteering with our Pony Partners and Hooves, Paws & Claws Programs
These two unmounted programs are seasonal with Pony Partners (PP) running on Fridays from 3:30 to 5:30 in the fall and spring and Hooves, Paws & Claws (HPC) running on Fridays from 3:30 to 5:30 in the winter and summer. Both are group programs with an emphasis on working together and social interactions. Being a volunteer with one of these programs gives you the opportunity to be more directly involved in teaching students, under the guidance of the instructor(s). PP volunteers need to have a solid knowledge and comfort level with horses, while HPC volunteers need to feel comfortable working with different animals. Both programs require interacting directly with students.
Volunteering with Horse-n-Buddy, our Therapeutic Cart and Ground Driving Program
Our Horse-n-Buddy (HNB) lessons run one per afternoon from 5:30 to 6:30, making it a shorter day. Although not required to know anything about cart driving, a comfort around horses is helpful when volunteering with this program.