About our volunteers
At the Duchess Sanctuary, our volunteers serve a vital role in caring for the almost 200 horses who call it home. With 1120 acres of pastures, woodlands, and facilities, there is no shortage of ways that volunteers can help with the operation of the sanctuary. Involving the community in our work is important to us—join us!
Duchess Sanctuary location
Duchess Sanctuary is located near Oakland, Oregon.
Direct Care–Equine: Assist with feeding, watering, and equine medical treatments or during herd health procedures, groom/bathe special needs equines as instructed, and clean enclosures which may include shoveling manure, raking, weeding, and scrubbing water troughs.
Groundskeeping/Maintenance: Assist with general maintenance of sanctuary, equipment and grounds by mowing, weeding, clearing brush from pastures and/or fence lines, maintaining memorial and other garden areas.
Office Assistant: Provide administrative support to staff by helping with common office duties and volunteer scheduling.
Outreach/Events: Promote Duchess by interacting with the general public, answering any questions, providing information about opportunities for individuals and businesses to get involved, identifying additional outreach opportunities and assisting with event planning.
Volunteer Leader: Help develop our volunteer program by participating in a volunteer leadership team, helping to deliver volunteer orientations and training, and helping to engage volunteers more fully in our work.
Benefits of volunteering
Volunteers at Duchess have the opportunity to make new like-minded friends, learn about a wide variety of equines in rehabilitation or general population at the sanctuary, as well as equine care and sanctuary management in general.
Becoming a volunteer
- Volunteers must commit to a minimum of 50 service hours, with no less than 8 hours per month.
- Volunteers under 18 must have permission from a parent or guardian to participate in our program. Teens 16-17 may work independently after attending the orientation with their parent or guardian. Teens 12-15 can volunteer with a parent or guardian as their partner at all times.
- Volunteers must meet the requirements outlined in the Essential Capabilities document.
- We recommend all volunteers have a current tetanus inoculation.
- We cannot accommodate court-ordered community service at our Center.
- Volunteers must pass a criminal background check.
- Prospective volunteers should attend a tour and information session at Duchess, typically scheduled one Saturday per month, with alternate times available if needed, based on staff schedules. To register for an orientation, email Jennifer Kunz or call 541-459-9914.
- Carefully review the information above and position descriptions before applying.
- Complete an online application form linked below. Note: You'll be asked to upload your completed Essential Capabilities document when you apply.
- If, after the orientation, we mutually determine this opportunity is a good fit, you will be asked to authorize a background check based on the type of volunteer position for which you are applying.
- Following the completion of the background check, a nominal set-up/training fee of $25 will be due to help cover our expenses and to cover the costs of the first volunteer t-shirt. (These fees may be waived upon request if they would cause a barrier to an applicant’s ability to become a volunteer; please contact us directly if you would like to discuss the training fees.)
- Before your first shift, you will be asked to sign a volunteer agreement and a waiver and release of liability.
- After you are made an official volunteer, all training is individually established based on your skills, interests, and availability.
Please apply for the position that interests you most. After you submit your application, you’ll have the opportunity to indicate other roles in which you might be willing to participate.