Make a Difference



Volunteers are the backbone of our equine centered activities for people with special needs. Most of our clients would be unable to participate without the support and encouragement of their volunteers.

As a volunteer, you will be part of a team, working alongside your fellow volunteers, the instructors, therapists, clients, and our horses. You help to ensure the physical safety of our clients while supporting their emotional well-being through acceptance and friendship. Your assistance helps our clients to perform tasks and achieve goals contributing to increased confidence and self-esteem. The sense of joy and accomplishment experienced by our clients is due to you, to all of our wonderful volunteers, who dedicate a few hours each week to this program. Together, we DO make a difference.

Volunteers may take on several different roles including:

Horse-leader: entrusted with controlling the horse’s gait, behavior and movement during a riding lesson. The Leader understands that the rider should be allowed to control the horse to the maximum of their abilities while taking direction from the instructor.  Experience with horses is necessary.

Side-walker: the volunteer’s role is to provide whatever assistance is needed to give the rider a balanced and correct position while mounted and must be physically able to do so. The side-walker aids in communicating and implementing the tasks given by the instructor to the rider.

Barn Stagehand: works behind the scenes by helping to groom and dress our horses in the appropriate tack and equipment for each lesson.

Instructor Assistant: for volunteers under 13 years old without previous horse experience, you help the instructor with the set up and execution of daily lesson activities. You might also be asked to act as a companion to our riders before and after their lesson.

Ringside Supervisor: is in charge of helping to assign and rotate volunteers, maintain daily lesson schedule, and ensure that horses are correctly tacked and ready.  This position is only open to those volunteers with previous experience upon the recommendation of Full Circle instructors and Program Director.

Volunteer forms (3) should be completed and sent to: Full Circle ECA* 14 Carlton Ct.  New City, NY 10956 or handed in at volunteer orientation prior to the start of sessions. Volunteer orientations are mandatory for all new volunteers and dates will be posted.  Contact Full Circle at  to request information about daily and seasonal schedule times.