Volunteers are needed for the 17th year of Great Strides of Northeast Iowa.

Great Strides is a non-profit, volunteer-run program for therapeutic and recreational horseback riding for persons with disabilities.

"New volunteers are needed and welcomed - participation is fun and rewarding," said Eunice Veeder of Great Strides.

Each rider in the program requires three volunteers: a horse-experienced person to lead the horse and two sidewalkers to walk along each side of the horse to assist the rider as needed. Sidewalkers do not need to be experienced with horses.

A training session for volunteers who are interested in being sidewalkers is Wednesday, April 24, from 5 - 6 p.m. at the Casper Arena, 201 Meadow View Dr., Decorah. Both new and former volunteers are encouraged to attend the training, but if unable to do so are still welcome to volunteer this season.

To get to the Casper Arena, take Locust Road to Highland Dr., turn right on Highland Dr. and go east past the KDEC radio station. When the paved road turns to gravel, turn right on Helena Ave. Go one block and the arena will be on your left at the corner of Meadow View Dr.

For more information about the Great Strides program, and for this year's schedule, go to www.greatstridesofneiowa.org. On the website is a link to the forms that all volunteers are required to complete annually prior to participation. You may bring your completed forms to the training; or, forms will be available at the training.

For further information, call Barb Kellogg at (563)382-5733, or Veeder at (563)419-1621 or e-mail gstrides@gmail.com.