Come and join our fun and fast paced horse team on our Eco-sanctuary, where you will be learning about equine welfare, developing positive reinforcement techniques, and living as part of vibrant community all dedicated to sustainable living and animal welfare.
Volunteering is a fun and hands on way to immerse yourself in a field of interest, invest in an area you want to pursue for study or simply a way to give back.
As a volunteer with us you will be involved in all aspects of horse care from feeding to grooming, health checks, exercising and of course learning about fore free training and strengthening the bonds between volunteer and horse. Each applicant will spend time with a mentor where they can learn how to handle and be with the horses first, then gain and develop communication and positive reinforcement skills.
You will be working with the equines in the day, and relaxing in our beautiful luxury Mongolian yurt by the evening, with your own private kitchen, bathroom and living space to enjoy.
We maintain a healthy balance between working, learning and playing, and as all of our horses have been rescued or found abandoned due to abuse or neglect, our main focus is on rehabilitation for carefully vetted re-adoption, or they are put into retirement to live their lives to the very best they can, being cared for by our volunteers in peace.
You are not just here to "work" with horses, you are here to learn about a whole new way of being with horses.
*Please note we do not offer the horses out for riding*
We started as a couple with a dream to create a small self-sufficient Eco Horse and Animal Sanctuary in 2018. We are now a registered charity with over 6500 acres, volunteers from all over the world, and an even bigger 'finca' family of over 400 animals, including 22 horses and 3 donkeys.
- *Our Mission; To give a voice to animals who cannot speak for themselves, and a safe place in a sustainable eco-sanctuary providing education and collaboration with like minded associations to change the future of animal welfare forever.
- *Our Vision; To see animals living species appropriate lives, relaxed and free, no longer used, abused or exploited for recreational pleasure.
- *Our Values; To always make decisions that align with our mission, putting the needs of our animals first. Fighting for animal rights and law reform, and educating and inspiring others to join the fight with us.
We first opened as a horse charity, until we saw how greatly we were needed by many other animals on the Island, so we started to open our doors to a wide and wonderful variety of abandoned pets, stray cats and dogs, and rescued farm animals, from goats, to pigs, to Guinea pigs, to bearded dragons!
Sustainability is at the heart of everything we do, and our ENTIRE sanctuary (or 'finca') is built from clay, scrap wood and metal, and waste material. We eat "freegan" as all of our food comes from supermarket and farm waste, and have an incredible kitchen team who turns all that "waste" into incredible meals for us twice a day. We also boast some amazing regenerative systems to keep us sustainable, such as our solar, wind turbines and water systems. We turn all of our food waste to compost, and even use all of our horse manure to heat the hot water pipes for our showers, we're like a sustainability power house!
Our project is beautiful but hard work, we get the balance of working as a team to make it happen but enjoying the experience of back to basic living. As we live in a community based on animal welfare and sustainable living you must be passionate about this and happy to live in a sustainable way without luxuries. We rely on animal and nature lovers to add their own beautiful ideas into this project, help us to grow and expand and leave behind their personal touch and legacy to keep the dream alive for many years to come.
We have up to 40 amazing volunteers coming and going from here at any one time, who all speak a great variety of languages, but to keep things simple we all communicate together for work in English. The age range can vary, our youngest volunteer was little Leo aged 8, at the same time as Roberto our 72 year old gardener!
Working with the horses is often physically hard and although we welcome people from all ranges of professional or non-professional backgrounds, a hard-working attitude will take you further here than a lot of previous experience that you might have. Tenerife Horse Rescue celebrates diversity from all areas, so please let us know before booking if you have specific needs or disabilities so we can discuss the possibilities and come to a conclusion that is inclusive but also guarantees everyone’s safety.
We have an on-boarding video "How to Finca" for new volunteers to watch when they arrive here which explains our most important community rules. Most of these are common sense, but many that are in line with our morals connected to sustainable living.
To use as an example, every responsible adult understands that it's important to clean up after themselves, but not everyone is used to not throwing toilet paper down the toilet. We have a very sensitive septic system which is damaged by toilet paper and towels, so we provide bins to use in the bathroom which are changed daily. Following these important rules such as this are essential to keeping our community running smoothly; every hour a volunteer needs to spend unclogging the drains with toilet paper is another hour wasted that can be used to care for our animals, or build our sanctuary. You might find it a bit rustic living in such a way to start, but we are all here to support each other and make your transition in as smooth as possible.
Our secret weapon comes in the form of our "freegan" diet and life style! We have an agreement with several super markets on the Island where we collect their 'waste' food every day (in amazing condition) and take it back to turn it into incredible meals for our hard working volunteers! We separate the food 3 ways; the best for the volunteers to our pantry and our kitchen, the second best food goes to our animals, and the rest goes to our compost to be eventually made into bags to sell, very sustainable! We are also a registered food bank on the Island so we send a lot of food to impoverished families every day. There are two meals prepared for you per day, breakfast at 11am and lunch at 14:30. We make a lot of vegetarian and vegan food that can be eaten by all, but all diets are accepted on the finca, as long as everyone is respectful of each other views. You are then allowed to use any food that we have here from either the fridge or the pantry to cook/consume at any time, provided that there isn't a name on it. A lot of the time we encourage group cooking and there are two nights a week where we have our community dinner.
On the finca we communicate with each other in English for work so that everyone can always understand. However there are many different languages being spoken here and we encourage each other to practise if you feel comfortable :) There are parts of the Island where English is a lot more commonly spoken, but it's always nice to have a little bit of basics before you come to feel more comfortable and make a bit of an effort with the locals!
Our horses here are all barefoot, therefore hooves need to be trimmed regularly. However even in this difficult landscape our horses are more than confident enough to navigate themselves around when they are out exercising! Everyone that works with, or owns horses should have a certain level of knowledge, be able to recognise a healthy balanced hoof and know what is needed to encourage this in your horse. No hoof – no horse. Unfortunately we see some horrendous cases of poor hoof care here on the Island, and it is a big problem for the majority of equines that arrive on the finca. We will give you the training and support that you need, and we expect all of our volunteers with the horses to get involved, give it a go and hopefully learn a huge amount about a very interesting skill.