No Experience Needed

As a Hope Haven Volunteer, you will have the satisfaction of knowing you are making a profound and life-altering difference for children and adults with emotional, physical or intellectual challenges. It is not necessary to have experience – we will train you plus we offer on-going training  monthly to help our volunteers continue to improve their knowledge and skill base.


We Need You

Without volunteers, our therapeutic riding program couldn’t operate. We value your time, commitment and enthusiasm and hope that you will find volunteering with us to be satisfying and rewarding.



To be a Hope Haven Volunteer, we require that you are at least 16 years old, complete and sign our Volunteer Application form and attend attend our volunteer orientation and training sessions.

Volunteer Positions Available

At Hope Haven, we have a wide variety of volunteer positions available. Every position counts and it is not necessary to have experience – we will train you! Take a look at the position we typically recruit volunteers for and if you see a position you are interested in and would like more information, please email volunteer@hopehavencentre.org.


Horse Leader assists the rider in preparing the horse for lessons and leads the horse during the lesson.

Sidewalker walks beside the horse and rider providing support and stability.

Assistant to the Instructor works directly with the Riding Instructor to prepare for a lesson.


Volunteer Coordinator helps to oversee the recruitment, training and retention of volunteers.

Administrative/Office Assistant  provides general office task for the  Executive Director.

Student Volunteer Co-Ordinator helps to oversee the recruitment of student volunteers.

Student Fundraising Co-Ordinator helps to co-ordinate student fundraising efforts.

Fundraising Committee Members helps develop strategies, identify potential donors and assist with event planning.

Workshop Leaders/Instructors - leading monthly workshops

Special Events Volunteers assists with fundraising and other special events that occur both onsite and offsite.

Memory Keeper/Digital Scrapbooker helps us  document how our years unfold via pictures and stories.

Newsletter Committee Members designs the monthly newsletter using content supplied by Hope Haven.

Amateur or Professional Photographer for onsite and offsite activities.



Barn & Property Helper assists with a variety of chores including general barn clean-up, feeding/watering horses, spring clean-up,
trail maintenance, gardening, and paddock cleaning.

Turnout Volunteers assist with morning horse care including turnout, feeding, and watering.

Handyperson assists with servicing our equipment.

Safety Ambassador tours the facility twice yearly to ensure that we confirm to the National Safety Standards Checklist (CanTRA).

Carpenter helps with general maintenance and projects around the farm and property.

Landscaper helps us to manage various landscape projects (design and/or execution).

Horse Committee Members help to source horses that may be used in our programs and donated equipment such as saddles, bridles, and horse blankets.

Tack Care Volunteers help keep the tack for our horses in tip-top shape.

Exercise Riders help to exercise our therapy horses. Competent riders who can school according to weekly guidelines, trail ride and help in simulating Hope Haven lesson situations as required (as riders, leaders, sidewalkers). Must be comfortable with groundwork such as leading, grooming, mounting and dismounting. De-spooking and desensitizing will only be done under the supervision of Head Trainer.

Special Interest Group Activities

Activity Assistants Help out with our school groups and other special interest groups facilitating alternate activities both indoors and out. These could include scavenger hunts, hikes, snowshoeing, fishing, arts and crafts, yoga, rhythmic drumming and more.

Hope Haven

545747 Sideroad 4A, RR #2
Markdale, ON N0C 1H0

(t) 519-986-1247

Barb Sheperd, Executive Director

Robyn Allen, Program Manager

Holly Stiene, Volunteer Coordinator

Ann-Ida Beck, CanTRA Senior Instructor (CTRSI)

Gillian MacNeill, Horse Trainer


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