“Volunteers are the backbone of any successful competition and we couldn't run the events without their precious gift of their time,” the Eventing Discipline Manager for the 2018 World Equestrian Games (WEG) Shelley Page said. Not only is Page the designated eventing manager for the 2018 WEG in Tryon, N.C., she is also the show organizer for the 2018 United States Eventing Association (USEA) American Eventing Championships (AEC) presented by Nutrena Feeds at the Colorado Horse Park in Parker, Colo.
As an advocate for the USEA Volunteer Incentive Program (VIP), Page stressed the importance of volunteers. In order to make volunteers feel appreciated, Page emphasized she does, “everything possible! I try to always thank them personally, I try to get gifts for them to take home, I listen to their input (good and bad), and I always let them know they are the best part of my team.”
Shelley Page took a moment out of her busy Volunteer Coordinator's schedule to participate in the "horse" race at the 2017 American Eventing Championships. USEA/Leslie Mintz Photo.
Her team is assembled with the help of the VIP app which will be used at the 2018 AEC to organize volunteers. This is the second time in a row the AEC has used the VIP app, and in 2017 the AEC proved to be an influential event to shift the Volunteer leaderboard. “The best thing about utilizing the VIP app is it keeps all of the volunteer information in one place. I always add my volunteer coordinator(s) and volunteer leads (dressage, XC, show jumping, VIP, etc.) so they can easily manage their groups of volunteers, but I can [also] check in and see all that is being done,” explained Page.
“I insist on using the app, as I do so many events a year. It's the easiest way to keep track of all of people at all of my events!” Grand Oaks Horse Trials in Fla., Grand Prix Eventing at Bruce’s Field in S.C., The Fork Horse Trials in N.C., Mars Essex Horse Trials in N.J., Ocala Jockey Club in Fla., Poplar Place Horse Trials in Ga., and the Wellington Eventing Showcase in Fla., are just a few of the numerous events Page organizes every year.
Page shares a similar mindset as Loch Moy Farm’s Carolyn Mackintosh in that volunteers are an integral part of a successful event. USEA/Claire Kelley Photo.
As a show organizer extraordinaire, Page has heard the good, the bad, and the reluctant comments about the VIP app. “I so often hear that events don't want to try the app because their volunteers won't use it. The user of the app can add people into the system and then easily talk volunteer through the sign-up process or there is a great, very easy to follow tutorial on [EventingVolunteers.com] to walk anyone through how to use the program. I can't emphasize enough how amazing the customer service is if you need assistance, make changes, or have suggestions for the app.”
“It's all a continued work in progress and we are all helping build it together.”
To help become the backbone of our sport, find the next volunteer opportunity at EventingVolunteers.com.
About the Volunteer Incentive Program
In efforts to recognize the dedication, commitment, and hard work that volunteers put into eventing, USEA formed the Volunteer Incentive Program (VIP) in 2015. In 2017, an online management portal was designed for volunteers, organizers, and coordinators at EventingVolunteers.com (available as an app for iOS and Android).Volunteer incentives include national and area recognition, year-end awards with ribbons, cash prizes, trophies, a top ten USEA Volunteer leaderboard, and a Volunteer of the Year award which is given to the volunteer who accumulates the most volunteer hours over the USEA competition year. Click here to learn more about the USEA Volunteer Incentive Program.
The USEA would like to thank Sunsprite Warmbloods for sponsoring the Volunteer Incentive Program.
After several continuous days of rain, the skies cleared over Leesburg, Virginia today as the Morven Park Fall International CCI4*-L got under way with the first horse inspection. Warm weather, bright sunshine, and fall decorations set the stage for 25 horses to present before the ground jury. All 25 horses passed on first inspection. The ground jury consisted of Wayne Quarles (USA), Robert Stevenson (USA), and Sue Baxter (GBR).
While a total of 95 4- and 5-year-old horses will be vying for top-finishes in The Dutta Corp. USEA Young Event Horse (YEH) East Coast Championships next weekend, a select group of YEH graduates are entered in the CCI5*-L division at the second annual MARS Maryland 5 Star at Fair Hill Presented by Brown Advisory. The USEA YEH program has run successfully for over 15 years, and many graduates of the program have gone onto compete at the pinnacle of the sport, the FEI 5-Star level of eventing, including the four horses entered in the 2022 Maryland 5 Star.
Founded in 2019, the MARS Bromont Rising U25 Program was initially created to assist up-and-coming riders under the age of 25 in North America who had not yet competed in a destination event, such as the program’s namesake the MARS Bromont CCI in Lac Brume, Quebec, Canada, or been recognized by the USEF programs intended for emerging athletes.. Spearheaded by the late Steve Blauner and Sue Ockendon, the program sought to give back to the sport by helping the next generation of riders get more experience under their belt with the help of the financial assistance provided by the program, and the two days of included instruction from leading coaches around the world.
Strides for Equality Equestrians (SEE) is excited to kick off a two-year anniversary celebration, happening all throughout the month of October in the form of “SEE Month”. SEE’s goal during October is to raise awareness about our mission of opening doors for equestrians from diverse backgrounds while also fundraising to continue our work and future projects.