Sierra Therapeutic Equestrian Program riding program seeking volunteers

Volunteers are sought to work with veterans, children and individuals struggling with physical, mental, emotional or educational special needs at a therapeutic riding facility in Washoe Valley.

The nonprofit Sierra Therapeutic Equestrian Program, or STEP, is hosting a volunteer and membership roundup at 1:30 p.m. Thursday in Marlette Hall of the Cedar Building at Western Nevada College, 2201 W. College Parkway.

Founded in 1997, STEP provides therapeutic riding services to help its participants improve balance, joint mobility, coordination, muscle tone and posture, while easing symptoms of disabilities, including brain injuries, multiple sclerosis Down syndrome and others. Therapeutic riding instructors use props, games and exercises that allow riders with cognitive disabilities to learn complex tasks on the horse. Instructors incorporate daily living skills and basic education into riding lessons.

STEP also offers free activities for active duty military personnel, reserves, Guard members and veterans.

Volunteers do not need experience with horses to help. Volunteers also can help by serving on a fundraising committee or helping in the office or at a fundraising event. Training is provided.

Operated at Konnie and Terry McGruder’s home and equestrian center, the program is at 33 Bellevue Road in Washoe Valley. It is affiliated with the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International.

For more information, call 775-530-7073, or email is, or go to


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