Your first step is to fill out the appropriate volunteer form here it will take you to our Volunteer Portal. If you are 18 or older, we ask that you also complete a background check for a $10 fee at CastleBranch.
Once your volunteer form and background check (if applicable) have been completed, reviewed, and accepted, you will be able to sign up for the Volunteer Orientation- Training I and the Horse Handler Training- Training II through the Volunteer Portal under the “Opportunities” tab.
* New Volunteer Uniform Starting Jan. 1, 2019:
Volunteers are required to purchase a McKenna Farms Volunteer Shirt for $10 and wear it during each volunteer session. These are available in the main office.
Horse Handler Training Procedures:
Volunteers who handle horses in any capacity (i.e. feeders, groomers, leaders, etc.) are required to complete a Horse Handler Training course annually.
Background Check Procedures:
Volunteers age 18 and older are required to complete a background check annually at CastleBranch
Potential Volunteer Opportunities:
Volunteer opportunities are available in horse care, horse leading, sidewalking during sessions, fundraising, facility maintenance, landscaping, events, administrative tasks, and more! More opportunities and their descriptions can be found on McKenna Farms’ Better Impact site. Groups such as Eagle Scouts, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, corporations, etc. are always welcome!
Dress Code/Food & Drink:
Appearance is key! All volunteers are required to wear a McKenna Farms Volunteer shirt during each volunteer session. These shirts are available for purchase for $10. Please make sure to wear appropriate footwear each time you come to the barn. This entails closed toe shoes, pants or appropriate length shorts, and your Volunteer shirt. Also, feel free to bring something to drink and snack on while you’re working at the farm. There is a water bottle refilling station for everyone to use.
Our minimum age to volunteer is 8 years old. Children ages 8-13 years old must be accompanied by an adult who will complete all tasks with the child while they are at the farm. This means the parent must complete a Volunteer Form, provide a background check, and attend the Volunteer Orientation- Training I with the child. Children ages 14 and up are eligible to be at the farm without their parent or guardian as long as it has been prearranged with a staff member.
Children ages 14 and older are eligible to lead horses and participate in hippotherapy sessions, i.e. leading the horse and sidewalking, depending on experience level. In order to sign up for a Horse Handler Training- Training II course, you must be 14 years of age. Please contact the Volunteer Department if you have a child under the age of 14 who is interested in attending the Horse Handler Training- Training II.
Community Service Prospects:
If you are wishing to obtain court mandated community service hours, you will need to complete a volunteer application on our volunteer portal here. If you are 18 years of age or older, you will also need to submit a background check at CastleBranch. If you are 17 years old or younger, you will need to submit legal documentation of your offenses.
One these are completed, received, and reviewed by the Volunteer Manager, you will need to sign up for a Volunteer Orientation- Training I through our Volunteer Portal. Community service hours are offered Monday through Friday from about 8am-5pm depending on staff availability.