Education, Rehabilitation and Welfare Centre "Helenow" - Hippotherapy Centre (POL-4)

Type: Environmental/Green Projects: Animals - Country: Poland

Brief description and main aims

“Helenow” is a complex of institutions dedicated to education, treatment and welfare of children and youth with neurological disorders and dysfunctions. It is one of the oldest institutions providing support to children and youth with special needs. Its patients come from Warsaw and other towns and cities from the whole country.

Main Activities

The center consists of several pubic and autonomous institutions, for example the hippotherapy center, special education and treatment center, there are currently about 180 pupils in "Helenow". The volunteers work mostly in hippotherapy which is the use of horse riding as a therapeutic or rehabilitative treatment for kids with special needs and boarding school. Volunteers hep to prepare horses for sessions and take care of them after sessions, assist therapists and children during therapy. 
You can see the video of volunteers work in hippotherapy center here: 

Volunteer tasks

The volunteer works mostly at: 
Hippotherapy Centre (children and youth)
Volunteers will support therapists and assistants in preparation to and conducting hippotherapy activities (cleaning horses, saddling horses, longing during the activities, helping therapists in running exercises, dressing and undressing children)
Special Education and Treatment Centre (children and youth)
Volunteers will help with homework and self-study activities for the pupils of the boarding school, help with self-care activities and help transporting the pupils on the area of the dormitory and the Centre.
For long term volunteers there is also an opportunity to work in art therapy classes. Here, volunteers have a chance to interact mostly with teenagers who finished or are about to finish their school education.

Volunteer requirements / Skills

Volunteers should:

  • Be friendly and willing to get to know and work with disabled people.
  • Not be afraid of animals and be willing to work with them. (The sessions are all year round so be prepared to work outside alsi in winter). 
  • Be reliable and diligent. 
  • Be independent and ready to have own ideas and initiative.
  • Be open-minded and open to different cultures and lifestyles.
  • Be able to communicate in English.
  • Be motivated to work as a volunteer (no paid work nor studies are allowed during your project) and willing to learn,
  • Be ready to dialogue and cooperation in case of conflict situations
Any talents and hobbies such as playing instruments, painting, dancing, cooking etc. will be helpful.
Volunteers need to provide criminal record. 


“Helenow” is located in the green suburbs of Warsaw, which are mostly residential area but with good access to shops, supermarkets and local cafes. It is well connected with the city centre and the journey lasts about 45 min. 

Hosting Situation (Board and Lodging)

The volunteer will stay in a shared room in a flat on the premises, or with a host family, depending on the availability.
Lunches will be provided in the canteen on working days, and a food allowance for other meals and weekends wil be given to the volunteer.

More Information

Facebook page of the centre

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