Virginia Tech® home

Volunteers learn new skills while caring for Hokie Horses

Loading player for
Category: academics Video duration: Volunteers learn new skills while caring for Hokie Horses
Volunteers have helped provide outstanding care to the university's horses, through the Equine Volunteer Program. No previous experience is required of the volunteers, many of whom learn new skills and build their confidence while also making new friends.
Horses are unique and that we usually have to take care of them twice a day. Whereas other livestock species, we can usually feed them and check them once a day, particularly with our writing program, those horses have to come into a barn every single day to be used for our lesson program. And then they get turned back out in the pasture so they can be a horse and the natural environment when they're not in left them. So that necessitates that we have a lot of people that have to help bring in those 20 horses twice a day, as well as check the overall health and wellness of our horses that the other facilities, having a large number of volunteers has really helped our programs be able to provide outstanding care to our horses. It creates a really neat opportunity for a lot of people regardless of their background to get the experience of working with them. Of course, you got to do some of the basic things, feed, clean up after on freshwater fresh. Hey, but then there's some of the fun things. There's been babies on the farm. We get to do the activity that I didn't really think of like picking out their feed and getting a medicine. Really depending on the day can be really different. The teams that I've worked with had been really fun. And everything's oriented around just you learning, learning about horses, learning about how to take care of and best provide warm. It's, it's been really cool to get to kinda have that hands-on experience. I have gain not only friends from this experience, but also just competent. I love this program. I'm so thankful for it. This is actually my third semester. I started spring of last year. I think that going in I was very nervous because I didn't have much horse experience at all. So I was always afraid that I was going to make mistakes or not do something right? It was definitely, definitely a confidence builder for me. I am a chef, liters, I make the feed and I kind of manage everybody and make sure that people are comfortable with the tasks that they have and kind of oversee things and make sure everything is done. I have really enjoyed my time here, something that I look forward to every week. Amid COVID, we're all kind of looking for those opportunities to explore anything new yet out of our right. I will call it Self-care is something that I enjoy and look forward to. After my shift, I'm always in a better mood. The next day I'm even in a better mood just because I got to spend some time with the horses.