The little horses/minis need help to work in the community two or more times a month (approx 6-8 hours a month) mostly on Saturdays. (some months we work every weekend). We require a commitment of at least 2 visits per month to be active.
The next Volunteer Training class will be in April 2020. We normally do not train in winter.
Mini-Handler Requirements - you must be physically fit to handle a miniature horse of 100 - 220# in all situations. The minis may be small but they are strong. This is our most popular position - but we need to let you know beforehand - that Safety is #1 in Minis and Friends.
Please be aware that working with the minis is physically challenging.
Mini handlers must be able to stand for long periods of time as well as have excellent balance.
Your work as a handler requires agility to move alongside the mini while walking as well as move quickly when changing positions during a close-up interaction with those we visit.
We ensure the safety of both the minis as well as our volunteers or the reverse at all times and this has given us a fantastic reputation for being "safety first" when we work with the little horse therapists.
A mini handler works in a 2 person team with a mini at our many facilities we visit on weekends. Everyone starts at the back-end, meaning you are the one that guides the mini around wheelchairs/walkers and also the one responsible for scooping accidents that may occur (easy - dog scooper). After you have been to a few visits you move to the front end - which often entails stooping by your mini to advocate safety while hands pet him. The front end also guides hands to where they can pet or hug the mini.
Everyone must attend our Equine Guided Interactions Training (EGI). This is a 2 hour class with hands-on following the visual aid we provide you.
You must fill out the application which will be sent to you on request
You must have returned it before you receive the location to the training
At the training, you will receive a workbook with a visual aid on EGI and your logo t-shirt
There is a $20.00 admin fee which helps us with the cost of the workbook and logo t-shirt.
We ask that you sign up for the first EGI visit that is on the schedule following the training for more practice.
We have many positions in Minis and Friends - take a look and select those that interest you on our application - if you think of something not there - let us know! We love creativity! If you are more virtual or not hands-on - you would need to only attend 1 visit a month so you know what is happening in the organization. At fundraising events for instance - the minis are always there to spend time with them :)
We promise it will be an exceptional way to give back to the community.
Minis and Friends visit with those that have special needs - children, youth, adult, and seniors - or whom life's circumstances have created a special need. Please see our webpage to learn about how you can help too -- www.minisandfriends.org
Age is 16 and up with a parent. Students welcome that need community service for school.
Have fun and do something unique - the minis love people and we need your help.
No additional volunteer opportunities at this time.
About Minis and Friends
4509 Walsall Loop (Mailing Address), Austin, TX 78749, US
"Little Horses, Big Hearts" Minis and Friends is a group of caring people and horse lovers dedicated to sharing the love and spirit of miniature horses to those who need special, tender care. Minis and Friends brings our mobile herd of trained miniature horse ambassadors to people of all ages who may be suffering mentally, physically or emotionally. Our unique programs tailor activities for children with disabilities, at-risk youth, individuals in transition and elder adults to improve their motor skills, ability to connect, tactile response, use of senses and spirits through interaction with miniature horses.
Mighty Equines In Small Packages
Minis and Friends"is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Our organization was specially created by a group of friends who want to share this exciting equine experience with you.
Everyone young and old will enjoy a visit with our small, but mighty, equines. You will see big smiles during a visit with a small horse.
We wish to educate people about the unique ability of the miniature horse to soothe the soul. The human-to-horse bond also warms the soul and opens the heart. We bring a little bit of love to everyone.