We all know and love the “Minions”, those fictional characters that appear in the Despicable Me franchise, but did you know that Last Chance Ranch (LCR) has their own “Minions”?
The fondly called “Minions” are teenagers that are current lesson students at LCR. They came to Marie’s rescue one Saturday when she did not have an assistant and back-to-back lessons were scheduled all day! Marie manages the horseback riding lesson program at LCR. Check out our last blog to meet the amazing horses who are part of her lesson program.
Since that day, the minions help Marie get the lesson horses to/from the fields, get them ready for lessons, give birthday party pony rides (which are temporarily discontinued due to COVID) and assist with summer camp activities. They also school (this means to exercise/train) some of the adoptable horses. Even when there is not a lot to do, they will still hang around the barn after school, ready to assist with any project or horse that needs attention.
Why do the minions volunteer and love to be part of this special group?
Here are a few of their responses and pictures of them in action!
“I enjoy coming to LCR, learning about new horses and their abilities as this teaches me how to become a better rider with experiencing all the new/different situations.”
“I love being a minion as it has given me a good start to working with horses!”
“I love working with all the animals and have learned so much here!”
There is also a small group of adult volunteers who dedicate a couple of hours each week to help Marie work with the adoptable horses. When someone wants to volunteer to ride, they have an evaluation ride on one of the lesson horses, so their abilities can best be matched to the appropriate horse(s). Marie wants the volunteer riders to feel safe and never wants them to work with a horse that they are uncomfortable with. It is not always riding that needs to be done, as some days, certain horses need to be groomed and lunged, or assistance is needed with an adoption appointment, etc.
Without volunteers, Marie would not be able to accomplish all the things that need to be done with the horses and the lesson program. As with all the volunteers at Last Chance Ranch, they are very appreciated! LCR could not be what we are today without our volunteers and friends!
Posted: April 6, 2021, by Jill Roggio