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  • Alexandra Kaziyeva

Most Memorable Volunteering Experience at GallopNYC

During sophomore year of college, I volunteered at GallopNYC. The goal of this program is to provide a therapeutic horsemanship initiative for kids with disabilities and special needs. I started out as a “Side Walker” to assist in lessons to make sure the kids were following directions. Then I was promoted to “Volunteer Site Leader.” I supervised all volunteers and gave orientations to the new volunteers.

One day, I met an Autistic 10-year-old girl and hearing her experience inspired me to draw what she described. There is a fine line between knowing who we are and others’ perception of who we are in their minds. Not getting influenced by people’s opinions is the ultimate challenged for anyone. It is important to understand who you are and your core values. Once on the horse at GallopNYC, she felt like a brave knight from the Medieval times and all the noise of external negativity of her disappeared. This program brings confidence and light into these kids’ lives.


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