Volunteering is a challenging and rewarding element of being involved with a not-for-profit organisation such as RDA Alice Springs. Becoming a volunteer you have the opportunity to make friends, to learn new skills and to be involved in the planning, management and general operation of RDA Alice Springs.
Induction and Training
RDA Alice Springs understands the importance of inducting each of its new volunteers. Some of the subjects which are to be communicated to our Volunteers during induction include:
Our training is ongoing and offers improvement and opportunities for continuous learning and provides opportunities for individuals to develop new skills.
All our Volunteers are valued and appreciated. Our training sessions are both either formal or informal as ‘Learning by doing’ is well recognised for its effectiveness and can be successfully implemented in the volunteer environment. You will be instructed by our fully qualified coaches and Senior Volunteers.
Current Volunteer Portfolios
Leader/Horse Handler: While leading a horse in a lesson, volunteers are responsible primarily for the horse. Leaders need to be focused and alert for the duration of the class and must be able to safely control the horse at a walk or a trot. Give the rider some time to process the tasks assigned to them by the instructor. Also, try to avoid chatting with the rider. We want the riders’ attention and focus to be on their instructor and their horse.
Side Walker: Some students require a side walker while riding to ensure their optimal safety and comfort. This entails walking or jogging alongside the horse and rider for the duration of the class. A side walker’s sole responsibility is for the safety of the rider, and to provide physical, verbal and emotional support for them at the direction of the instructor. If there are two side walkers, the instructor will assign a “talking side walker.”
Grooming: All of the horses require grooming before and after a lesson. This includes picking their feet, brushing their coat (especially the saddle area), combing their mane and tail, applying fly spray, sponging if necessary and occasionally tending to minor cuts or wounds.
Tacking: Tack refers to the horse’s saddle and bridle. Some horses or riders require special pads, reins, or other gear to improve their comfort or performance. All of this will be indicated on the daily lesson roster. The horse should be ready at least 5 minutes prior to the next lesson.
Horses: Volunteers are needed to care for the horses twice a day. Morning crew (7:00am) need to feed the horses, clean and rake stables, remove rugs, put on fly nets and put horses out in the day paddock. Night crew (6:00pm) need to clean up paddocks, put horses in stables, remove fly nets, put on rugs and feed.
Facilities: RDA would not look as amazing as it does without the help of our “handy” volunteers to do repairs and upkeep.
Current Volunteer Portfolios
Committee of Management
Fundraising/Special Events: Interested individuals are welcome to join the fundraising committee and help the program to meet financial needs. The fundraising committee plans and executes the many events done each year by contacting clubs that are interested in offering financial assistance, getting donations, contacting vendors and so on.
Grant Writing: Experienced grant writers are needed to help identify foundations or grants with a potential for donating to the program, and to assist to write these grants.
Public Relations/Marketing: Submit periodic press releases as needed. Work to obtain more media coverage so RDA can have higher community awareness. Compiling a regular newsletter and periodically taking pictures of new horses or special events.
Committee Members: If you are interested in becoming a committee member, talk to the President or Secretary. RDA is always looking for professionals to volunteer their experience to help guide our program.