How to Get Involved


Our Donors


13620 Halleluiah Trail
Elbert, CO 80106
Phone: (719) 495-3908
Fax: (719) 494-1689
Email: PPTRC@PPTRC.org



PPTRC’s Volunteers are the muscle and the heart of our organization. We simply cannot exist without them! Our Volunteers are a necessary part of our classes, they help us in the office and take part in the stable work. They assist at many special events held throughout the year.

Our Volunteers constantly tell us how rewarding it is to assist our riders and help care for our special horses. The 250+ Volunteers donate more than 16,000 hours each year, a value of more than $160,000.

You definitely don’t need to be horse savvy to Volunteer at here PPTRC! You just need the desire to help a great group of people with handicaps and special needs! Call us to tell how you’d like to help.

  • Work in class as a side-walker or leader
  • Groom horses and get them ready for classes
  • Stable work - cleaning paddocks and stalls, fixing fences
  • Office work - filing, making phone calls, fund raising
  • Special events - horse shows, parades, fundraisers, etc.
Click here to register as a volunteer...


The Pikes Peak Therapeutic Riding Center is a community based organization whose volunteers comprise its heart and hands. PPTRC volunteers are committed, passionate, willing, caring and professional. They enhance the quality of the therapies/activities we provide and are role models for healthy social behavior. At PPTRC we value people, and our volunteers are afforded the same respect and care that PPTRC provides its clients. From their service experience through PPTRC our volunteers are provided an avenue to help others, receiving in return many more blessings than given.


PPTRC offers unpaid internships in a variety of areas. For more information please contact our office at 719-495-3908 or pptrc@pptrc.org.


Why Volunteer?

It is an extremely rewarding experience to work with our riders. Some individuals Volunteer to meet community service requirements for school, while others want gain horse experience, socialize with new-found friends, or simply for the fulfillment of helping others.

Who Can Volunteer?

You can volunteer with PPTRC if you are 14 years of age or older.

How to Register as a Volunteer?

Download and complete the PPTRC Volunteer Registration and Release Form (143KB PDF) and return to us via fax 719-494-1689. You can also scan and email it to pptrc@pptrc.org or snail mail it to 13620 Halleluiah Trail; Elbert, CO 80106.

Each volunteer is required to participate in an orientation program prior to participating in one of our therapeutic riding classes. Please download a copy of our Volunteer Handbook (348KB PDF).

What Can I Do as a Volunteer?

  • Classes - groom horses and get them ready for classes, be a side walker or a horse leader
  • Stable work - cleaning paddocks and stalls, fixing fences
  • Office work - filing, making phone calls, and fund raising
  • Special events - horse shows, parades, fundraisers and much, much more
SIDE WALKERS are responsible for the safety of riders. You help get horses ready for class, and assist your rider with their helmet then taking them to the arena to get mounted on their horse. You guide your rider safely as he or she gets to know and care for the horse. During the class itself, your job is to prevent the rider from falling off, but NOT to hold him or her on the horse. Your instructor will give you directions on how to assist each rider.

HORSE LEADERS are responsible for the safety of the horse and control at all times. You reinforce signals that the rider gives to the horse. While waking with the horse, you’ll maintain a proper distance from other horses in the class while walking, changing directions, and passing. You don’t interact directly with the rider; that is the side walker’s job. This role takes extensive horse experience, and if you are new to horses you will be assigned to sidewalk first. We offer classes throughout the year for all of our Volunteers to learn how to become a horse leader! So, let us know if you want to learn to lead or even if you just want to learn more about horses! Our Horse Conditioner as well as the Team Leaders are always happy to help you grow in your horse skills!

Volunteers Can Inspire

Volunteers Bill, Tim, Gene & Dick were standing against the rail one day during HPOT, and Pat (Rider Joe's, mom) snapped a photo of them. Joe made it into a painting, putting them outside against a rail fence, with Storm (Joe's horse) looking at them. Storm is the horse Joe rides, and these four men have been his helpers here for the past few years. Joe has limited control over his movements, yet he is able to create beautiful art like this. This painting is particularly special to us as we lost Tim this summer. Joe's art can be viewed on his website, beyondmywheelchair.com.


PPTRC Volunteer Testimony
By Bonnie Brown, a current PPTRC volunteer

As a volunteer at PPTRC, it seems I learn new things all the time. Better ways to lead a horse. Better ways to understand them. How much a cold clean bucket of water can mean. That each horse is as individual as we are. They lead big lives of their own before we ever meet them. I have learned to take big, deep breaths whenever I am in class with clients and horses. It's the best way for me to be calm and keep a good head. Special horses carrying precious cargo. Our clients are why we are here. I have seen so much progress with so many of our clients. Young and old. Once you have witnessed the magic and the miracles, you truly believe that you are part of something very important. There are a lot of smiles in our barn. People walk through the doorway and something happens to them. I know when I walk through the door I am always greeted with smiles. There is always laughter along with plenty of hard work. When our adorable little guys come for their class they wave to everybody and everybody waves back. They sit up high on their horse and get to see the world in a taller perspective. And they work so hard. It is really rewarding when a parent comments on progress and shows delight for what their child is doing. I am grateful to our instructors and trainers for helping me learn to do things right. When they explain something or correct something I could do better, I take it as a sign that they believe in me. Sometimes we grownups get insulted when we are corrected. We want to do right but we get embarrassed at our mistakes. But I am here to help others. It's the nature of good people to want to help. I benefit from the opportunity to do so. So I want to do it right. I love when our adult clients can find confidence and pride while riding. The atmosphere and people to talk to. Sounds simple but can mean a lot. And we all love being around this beautiful and very unique herd. You cannot help but fall in love with them. We are all in the same boat. We just want to be loved and treated with respect. In turn, we love and respect each other.

PPTRC Volunteer Testimony
By Art Aldridge
Edited and Reprinted with Permission, September, 2009

When Joyce and I first visited the Center to inquire about the programs, we weren’t sure if we would volunteer. That day, a Thursday, was an eye opener as they were short of volunteers. As I was raised on a farm and had been around horses, I was put to work side-walking with Sue.* Sue was recovering from injuries sustained in a fall. From that first day I was hooked on helping these beautiful children any way that I could.

The day Jenny* first came to the center and I saw her Mom carrying her in I knew that I was to work with her. She was like a beautiful rag doll. Jenny couldn’t walk and had to be carried to be put on her horse. Once on the horse she had to be held up as she had no control over her body. We (the therapist, Julie, Louise and I) propped her up with pillows and held her in place. Within the first session (8 weeks) she started holding on with her right hand, as lefty didn’t work for her. Late in the first session, the therapist let me help Jenny work on her stomach muscles by having her do sit ups and side bends on the horse. She tried to do everything the Therapist asked of her. Jenny won everyone over with her smile. From the start she would make up names for me, “bald head,” was her favorite. Jenny liked rhymes and added her own touch making up funny names for the characters. Needless to say I was proud of her as each session I could see a marked improvement. I’ve never seen anyone work so hard, with a big smile and a sense of humor. We can all learn from these kids.

The Thursday morning crew is a caring one not only for the patients but for the horses who have the patience of JOB, especially when the riders change positions, throw balls and bean bags etc. They are a hard working crew, that see a task that needs to be done (and just do it) to include grooming, tacking and warming up the horses, side walking and leading and mucking out the stalls.

It is within this atmosphere of harmony that we are able to pay close attention to the patients. This has allowed all of us to help the children, Jenny being one of many, where we have seen so much improvement. The joy of being around these wonderful kids and working with the super volunteers and staff has enriched all our lives especially Joyce’s and mine. All the volunteers at the center can be proud of what they do and the impact they have on the children and the parents who watch us work with their precious angels.

*names have been changed for confidentiality

PPTRC Volunteer Testimony
By Don, a current PPTRC volunteer

I love being a volunteer at PPTRC because...

Working with the clients and seeing the joy on their faces. Seeing the improvements in the riders and the look of satisfaction and accomplishments. Seeing the determination of the riders amazes me on a regular basis. Seeing the team of volunteers come together to ensure the riders have a successful ride. Working with all the wonderful volunteers who give their time and effort to improve quality of life for the riders. Working with the wonderful horses at PPTRC is therapy for me. Seeing the appreciation that the wonderful staff has for all the volunteers, makes you feel special! The friendships you develop at PPTRC with staff, volunteers, riders and families are all an added bonus! Bottom-line is I love being a volunteer at PPTRC because We can make a difference!


Learn more about our Volunteer Awards...