Is there an upper age limit for Volunteers?
No. We can usually find something for everyone to do and we have several volunteers in our team in their 70’s and two in their 80’s who help with our Mega Sale days.
However, if you would like to work with or around the horses, you need to have an appropriate level of fitness and mobility so that you can keep yourself safe. Horses can be unpredictable, no matter how quiet their temperament is and you need to be able to be nimble enough to move out of the way quickly if needed.
Is there a minimum age limit for Volunteers?
Yes. The minimum age for Volunteers is 17yo.
We used to accept Junior Volunteers when they had a parent willing to Volunteer at the same time, but this became a safety risk. It’s just not possible to monitor a child and a herd of horses at the same time – and it’s not fair on other Volunteers on the same shift to feel responsible for that added responsibility.
We may be able to make an exception IF a prospective Junior Volunteer is 15yo or older AND is confident and experienced around horses AND has a parent (who is also confident around horses) willing and genuinely committed to volunteering at the same time.
Do you have opportunities for Volunteers with special needs or disabilities?
Safety is always our primary consideration at the sanctuary and being able to work independently and safely around horses in a herd is a requirement for all Volunteers.
If your disability doesn’t compromise your safety around the horses, we would encourage you apply.
When our gardening program starts, we will have opportunities in that team also.
I am a Support Worker and my client loves horses. Can we Volunteer together?
Unfortunately not. NDIS clients that need the support or supervision of a carer are usually not able to independently keep themselves safe. It is not possible for a carer to adequately monitor their client and a herd of horses at the same time – which poses an unacceptable level of safety risk.
There may be opportunities in our gardening program when that starts – opportunities will be detailed on the Volunteer page when they are available.
Do you offer group programs?
No. Most of the clients we support have experienced significant trauma. Most struggle with issues relating to self-worth and would not feel comfortable in a group setting. Our program trials showed clearly that 1:1 Mentoring is far more effective for clients than group programs.
Who are your programs for?
We offer a range of programs for a range of different clients – please visit the Programs page for more information.
Most programs are designed for those living with the mental health challenges of big life stressors. They are also suitable for those that have not had one of those big stressors but are still finding it difficult to navigate life’s challenges without experiencing anxiety and depression.
Our Program Mentors are not trained to support clients with high needs due to physical or intellectual disabilities – nor are they trained to support clients that are not able to self-regulate their behaviour.
Do you have any program vacancies at the moment?
Can you take my horse?
Sadly no. We are not a horse rescue organisation. Every horse that joins our herd is with us for life – we don’t ever sell, lease out or adopt out any animals. We are also on a very small, council-owned facility as a temporary home and do not have the space to take any other horses.
We would love to relocate to a forever home with much more space so that we can increase our herd in the future but, until then, we are unable to help.
Do you offer horse riding lessons?
I’m looking for a quiet horse/pony – do you sell, lease or adopt horses/ponies?
No. We are not a horse rescue organisation. Every horse that joins our herd is with us for life – we don’t ever sell, lease out or adopt out any animals.
Visiting the Sanctuary
Can we visit the Sanctuary?
The only opportunity to visit the Sanctuary is by coming along to one of our weekly Morning Tea with Mumma Pony events.
All other visits are strictly by appointment only. The sanctuary is a centre for healing and growth. There are program sessions running at various times of the day throughout the week and it is critical that we provide clients with the utmost privacy during their sessions.
If you are wanting to visit the Sanctuary to see if it is somewhere that you may like to Volunteer – please go to the Volunteer page and complete our online application form. The first step in our process is to schedule a visit for you to the Sanctuary but we do that only after you’ve completed an application form.
Can I hire your arena?
No. We don’t hire out any facilities at the Sanctuary. If you are looking for a venue to host a clinic of some kind and are willing to do that as a fundraising event for the Sanctuary, please contact us to discuss.