Jessica in action

By Dan Roark

When we decided to highlight volunteers on the blog, it was just before the winter break preceding Chisholm Challenge. Following Chisholm Challenge, the wet weather was relentless, causing lesson cancellations. Now that Spring lessons are in full force with only the odd cancellation – and I have enough responses – it’s time to start the volunteer highlights.

I put forms in a folder on the table in the barn for each volunteer to fill out or take and fill out and return it to the folder or me. I asked them five questions. In certain circumstances I may paraphrase what a volunteer says, but for now I’ll let them speak for themselves. The first volunteer I would like to highlight is Jessica Hamilton.

What brought you to New Hope to volunteer and how long have you been volunteering?

I’m a former Special Ed teacher. When my health took a turn, I was looking for a place to give back. My background in rodeo club led me here. I’ve been on and off since 2019, but I really locked in in 2021.

Tell a little bit about yourself.

I am in my 30’s, with two kiddos. We are all neuro-spicy in my house! I am an avid podcast listener and ADHD – hacks enthusiast. I also sing constantly and used to direct a choir.

Who is/are your favorite horse(s) and why?

Ha! It depends on the day. Tommy and Olivia are often at the top of my list. Daisy Mae is super fun to work with. Gabby makes me laugh and Beau is my daughter’s favorite.

What is/are your favorite part(s) of volunteering?

I LOVE horse care and spent a year in Kim’s back pocket. There’s a lot of medical stuff involved. It is so great to see the horses feeling good.

The kids who “get it” after weeks of trying is 1000% worth every lesson.

How has volunteering affected you?

I have a deeper appreciation for the whole New Hope team. It takes a village! It has been my own therapy as I transitioned from teacher to disabled person. I also get to see my own child thrive through the preteen hormones and her own diagnoses, which just hit this year.

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Ride on and ride for hope.

Donate to New Hope.

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