I am an active volunteer with the students and on the board of directors of a nearby therapeutic riding program. I have loved horses for over twenty years, and this organization allows me to stretch my wings working with students that may not otherwise get the opportunity to be with these gentle, noble creatures.

I have been amazed at the growth opportunities I have had to stretch my skills as an Equine Gestalt Coach without being the instructor.  Supporting the students directly while the instructor provides the programs has tested my ability to relate with others that face some challenges in their daily lives.

I have learned from the students who are so enthusiastic about the opportunities they have to ride and to connect with the horses, instructors and volunteers. I have learned from the caregivers who bring the students to the barn. I have learned from the horses. I watch their grace and patience as they serve the students who are feeling like “ordinary kids” when they are in the saddle. I have learned from the other volunteers who give their time selflessly. I have learned from the instructors who have the knowledge and techniques to help the students learn new riding skills. I have learned from the other board and executive members who have so much to share.

The students have a wonderful time with the horses. The smiles are deep and genuine. My heart is full when I see them master something they have worked hard to learn. The connections that they make with the horses and volunteers is endearing. I am blessed to have the opportunity I do to make a difference in the lives of the students who bring us all together.

When you have the opportunity to serve, I invite you to pay attention to the blessings that you will receive.

Originally posted on the shared blog https://womenmoveitforward.wordpress.com 2017/06/12

The Gifts of Volunteering