My experience at MARE has been one of the best things in my life. The dedicated staff and volunteers that work effortlessly in all kinds of weather and situations to help people with disabilities each day to be the best they can be. The focus is always on abilities and to increase each individual's potential. The love of the horses and how accepting they are with their unconditional love, the many new young volunteers learning and sharing their time to help people that can't help themselves. MARE is a great place to give of yourself, meet new friends and be happy.
Where do I begin? M.A.R.E has been an awesome place to work, for the last 3 years. I have had the privilege of working with a lot of great people. The volunteers are people looking to make a difference in their community, the ridders are people working on bettering them selves to accomplish a goal, and the staff are people that dedicate their time to help ridders accomplish their goals.
The people are great, the horses are awesome, what more do you want, M.A.R.E. is a little slice of Heaven in Bakersfield.
After having to retire from a career, for medical reasons, i was physically and emotionally exhausted. I don't, exactly, recall how I came across their name, but I soon found myself at the MARE Riding center barn going through a volunteer workshop. I started as a side walker, and progressed to a horse leader. I was witness to some amazing things happening between the students and horses. I saw children bound by wheelchairs, move freely across the arena. Children silent and disconnected, verbalize to get their horse to "walk on" and " whoa", during a game of mounted Red light Green light. So many , too many to list in fact, wonderful stories were being written on a daily basis. One of those stories would end up being mine. In the midst of helping others, I found myself benefiting from this program. The knowledgeable and caring staff made you feel like family, the horses were 4 legged angels, the students were inspiring. Definitely a place that is beneficial to EVERYONE that enters the barn.
This is a place where miracles happen. I have been able to attend several events and have seen the impact of this nonprofit help not only their organization but others as well! Way to go MARE.
MARE is a nonprofit organization that does so much for the community. The work they do changes lives and I am so grateful to be a part of such an amazing nonprofit.
I started volunteering as a senior in high school in 2016 and it was the best experience I have ever done! Everyone at MARE is extremely friendly and fun to be around. I have learned so much about horses and also how MARE’s program works. It is amazing what MARE does for everyone and I would 100% recommend to volunteer at MARE because they are always needing help!
Before joining the MARE staff, I was a volunteer. It's the absolute best way to really get the feel of an organization - and I wanted to see if it was a "good fit" for me. Here's what I learned:
Even for just an hour or two - the help that one new volunteer can provide makes a difference for MARE. As with most non-profits, MARE runs with a lean staff. An extra person prepping the horses’ next meal, or haltering up a horse and taking her from stall to pasture is sincerely appreciated.
The staff and other volunteers are sincerely happy that volunteers contribute their time. Everyone has such a busy life, and to commit to a few hours each week to bring this program to our community is really special.
Every barn does things a little differently. I appreciated the MARE staff demonstrating and showing me the way that they prefer things done – from the routines for their horses to the pastures on the property. I was shown with respect, kindness, and so that I could quickly adapt and be relied upon.
I was surprised by how warm and welcoming all the experienced MARE volunteers were to a Bakersfield newbie, and appreciate how quickly I was made to feel a part of the team.
If someone in need of equine therapy is in your life, or you simply love being around horses and caring for them, then you’ll really want to consider volunteering for MARE once a week.
Volunteers must be 16 years old, or with a guardian, so that it’s adults and young adults present. Bring your fun, bring your talents, bring your skills!
Mare is a great organization. The team cares so much about their students and the positive work they do. They run a top notch facility and their programs truly make a difference in people’s lives.
mare is a great place. I love volunteering here and learning a lot about horses like how to take care of them. Also, the people here are very sweet and welcoming.
MARE is an amazing organization. The work they do changes lives, and I have seen first hand the joy that therapeutic riding can bring. MARE is an important part of our community and they have an amazing team that cares deeply about they work they do.
I have helped out at the events and helped clean stalls. It is really great to see all the kids that benefit from this program.
Bakersfield is so fortunate to have had the M.A.R.E. Riding Center serving our community for the past 30 years! I have been a volunteer at MARE for almost 4 years now and my only regret is that I didn't start sooner. We have a great, dedicated staff that works tirelessly to provide first-rate therapeutic care for all of our riders. We are also blessed by many volunteers who assist in all therapy sessions as well as tending to our awesome horses needs. As an older Vietnam veteran I am also very grateful that our local Wounded Heroes Fund provides therapeutic riding lessons to me and several younger veterans. Finally, the emotional bonds created by working with these magnificent horses is definitely healing to the soul.
I began volunteering at MARE a few months ago because I believe in equine therapy. Few methods of skill and motor development have the same impact AND bring such joy to the rider. MARE's management /instructor team work 7 days/week ensuring the horses are cared for and trained in such a way as to be patient and calm for riders with limited abilities. It's a clean, peaceful environment with professional staff and friendly volunteers.
I’m really enjoying this volunteer experience – it’s been designed to adapt to what each volunteer is capable of – what we physically can and cannot do, what might be nice to learn, and our availability schedule. Last week I helped feed the horses, had a lesson by an instructor on how to help prepare a pony for lessons, and brushed and groomed a horse. And when this old body of mine got a little tired, I sat down and polished a saddle! I really enjoy my time supporting MARE.
This is such a great place! A wonderful environment with a wonderful, friendly staff and great animals in their programs. A must visit!!!
I have experienced MARE since its beginning helping, providing and guiding people and families through difficult times in their lives. They do it with grace, understanding and counsel. They do it with smiles, hugs and love. MARE provides "hope on horseback" to Bakersfield community.
They provide a great service for people with disabilities. This program and non-prophet needs all the help and support that they can get. Great people and great animals.
I have volunteered in this amazing program for four years. It helps so many people and has so many kind and helpful staff and volunteers.
MARE does a terrific job of collaborating with local high schools to recruit volunteers. I work with MARE every year to disperse volunteer opportunities to high school students and each student that volunteers with this organization returns excited about their experience and service learning! Thank you MARE for offering this volunteer opportunity to so many young people. You are impacting those you serve and those you recruit to serve.
Kimiko, Helen, & Amazing Crew,
We cannot thank you and your AMAZING CREW FOR MAKING OUR GIRLS' DREAMS COME TRUE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THIS UNICORN VAULTING CAMP WAS INCREDIBLE AND SOOOOOOOOOOOOO AMAZING! WE WILL FOREVER TREASURE THE PRICELESS MEMORIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Please thank Helen and her awesome crew for us! They were the sweetest and every detail and craft was just precious and so well planned!! From crafts, cupcakes, vaulting, and Unicorn magic, we will forever be grateful you worked your magic to make memories for our girls! I finally narrowed down 300 pics to 130.
The staff is nice and welcoming! It’s a fun experience to work with horses and kids and it cool to watch how much this company helps people.
A wonderful therapy stable with well trained, calm, and beautiful horses and therapeutic lessons. The horses, volunteers, and staff all take great care to work with children and adults on various physical, mental, and emotional skills. Volunteers and riders will find a great community within M.A.R.E.'s stables.
My daughter has had the greatest experience at MARE. They are so patient with her, and it's got an awesome family vibe.
My daughter has been riding at MARE for almost 20 years and every time she gets on a horse she enjoys it. The facility is well tended, the horses are well suited to the job, the volunteers and staff are eager to help and make the most of her every ride. MARE is a godsend for my daughter - there are few activities she enjoys or engages in, and it is the only method of physical therapy that works.
This will be my daughter Dakotas 4th year at MARE. Valley Childrens Hospital in Madera Ca referred me to them due to my daughters disabilities. At first she was scared to death to even get on C.B.(the first horse she rode) but since then she has participated in horse shows has learned so much about grooming and is now riding like a champ, no fear. She is ready to try anything on the horses. She has bloomed. The staff here are very amazing. They show love and support, and really know what they are doing with both the horses and the riders. I love the staff. They have hearts of Gold. And the staff watching them as they train the volunteers is great too. It seems some of these kids have no idea what's in store for them but its amazing to see the high school volunteer staff blossom as well. Also my daughters lead Victor is a Vet. He is also a rider. I have so much admiration for him and the program he is in for our Veterans and I think 8t is great that MARE offers a program to our Veterans as well. I am really proud that my daughter is part of such a wonderful organization, it's like we are family, even with the horses. Oh I forgot to mention the horses. They are wonderful with the riders. It's like each rider and their horse become 1. The horses are easy going. They are have their own funny personalities. This program has helped my daughter grow and she will continue and so will many many others children and adults.
MARE is a wonderful program with the most wonderful people. They show the kids love and a sense of accomplishment along with therapy.
I can’t say enough good things about MARE and their staff. I joined their Veteran riding program late 2017. Since then it has helped me out tremendously. At the time and still to this day I battle depression and anxiety. The riding at MARE has made them manageable. I understand that I will always battle them but the riding will always help me with these struggles. The riding has made me a better person. I never knew coming here would start a new passion for me. This passion has benefited me not only on my horses back but in my own personal life. The staff here is second to none. I am greated with heart warming smiles and greetings every time I walk into the barn. Each instructor ensures that every lesson we are growing and learning in our horsemanship. They have always maintained a positive attitude and keep the atmosphere fun. I have also reconnected with brothers and sisters from the military. I never realized how much I was missing them in my life. Those relationships are priceless. We understand and respect each other. We have a bond that other person can understand. Like I stated there is not enough that I can put in word about how great MARE is.
MARE had been incredible for our severely autistic son the past four years. Hippotherapy is the only therapy that's actually helped him. He enjoys it and we can see the difference it makes!
MARE is an amazing nonprofit! Going out there as a volunteer and being able to walk with the horse and child is a wonderful experience. It always brings such joy seeing the kids connect with the horses and improve each time they go out. Love spending my time volunteer with this organization.
My son has been riding at MARE for going on 6 years now, and he loves every lesson. If he is feeling down or grumpy, riding one of MARE’s sweet horses never fails to lift his spirits and restore his self-confidence. The riding instructors and the staff are so motivating and accepting of his challenges. When he is riding all his concerns about social anxieties and academic difficulties melt away, and I can see that he is at peace and able to focus on riding. We love MARE for helping our sweet boy to regroup and feel whole every week.
I have the honor of saying I've been involved with M.A.R.E. for 25 years. Seen as an unconventional form of therapy, equine therapy is an incredible thing to experience no matter the capacity. Whether as a student, a volunteer, parent, instructor, or therapist, what unfolds during a lesson is something to behold. M.A.R.E. is an extrodinary program. I grew up in an environment where differences were celebrated and miracles happened on horseback. A young girl who struggled to control her body without assistance was able to take reins and maneuver a 1200 pound animal through an obstacle course. A blind man cantered perfect cirlces by listening to an instructors voice for directions. A woman injured in an accident was told she would never walk again; she now mounts her equine partner unassisted and rides unincummbered. Veterans, suffering from PTS, form partnerships with giant four legged friends who never judge them and somehow quielty sense thier need for companionship. For so many who may otherwise suffer quietly, their weekly lesson at M.A.R.E. is a shinning beacon of hope and inclusion. Horses have a spirit that, if given the chance, will build a person up and not tear them down like so much of the rest of the world. M.A.R.E. provides that opportunity. From the education of their volunteers, community involvement, level of professionalism, horsemanship, and determination to help provide funding for students, I remain dedicated to M.A.R.E. We help change lives one stride at a time, and I am darn proud of that.
I am a new volunteer without any prior horse experience. All of the staff and volunteers have welcome me and continue to help. There is continuing emphasis on safety for me, the horses and the riders. Picture yourself bonding with others, the horses, all for the purpose of helping the riders. I also am able to be a side rider. The dedication of the instructors helping the children, the parents doing all they can, the staff and volunteers working altogether to reach the ultimate goal. Walk On.
MARE is a wonderful place to volunteer! I have been volunteering off and on for about 2 years.
The volunteer coordinator trains incoming volunteers with integrity and precision! It's all about safety! Safe horse handling, safe client to volunteer interactions and the entire staff is welcoming and cheerful!
What a great place to learn everything about horses. There are those like me who dreamed of having horses when we were young, and did just about any chore for other folks in order to smooth a mane and kiss a velvet nose. The barn is the hub of activity, and the special kids and adults who come to ride are the reason MARE is an anchor non- profit in my community.
It is an amazing thing to watch the riders settle into a saddle on a trusted horse. To watch a child's confidence grow week by week is no less than a small miracle.
I love this place.....it's grows on ya!
What an amazing program and nurturing environment for anyone involved with MARE! Whether a person is involved as a rider, a volunteer, a parent of a rider, a board member or staff, this is a remarkable group of supportive people. Therapeutic horseback riding is the "complete therapeutic package" as it simultaneously taps into a multitude of therapeutic disciplines, all within the space of each lesson. Opportunities and skills are revealed and lives are changed on a regular basis....such exciting things to witness!
Amazing opportunity for people to interact and form a connection with horses. This is a unique and effective therapy to help a wide range of children and adults. The staff and volunteers work so hard to ensure each person feels welcome and has great success. Just one of the best experiences we have had.
I volunteered here for 4 years, and the staff is truly amazing. The instructors are patient and caring, the barn staff take very good care of the horses, volunteer training is very thorough and clear, the facility is very clean and organized, and all the other volunteers i had the pleasure of meeting and working with were extremely kind.