New Volunteer Information

Volunteers Make DSES Happen!

DSES Volunteers make outdoor recreation a fun, exciting reality for kids and adults with disabilities. Teaching adaptive lessons, supporting events and fundraisers, or helping in the office, DSES volunteers change lives. Thank you for giving your time to our students and our mission. We welcome your participation and eagerly look forward to a fun-filled and rewarding time for all.

Ways to Volunteer with DSES

DSES offers camps, programs and lessons year-round! During the summer season, our instruction includes paddleboarding, kayaking, road cycling, mountain biking, hiking, and more. During the winter season, our instruction moves into alpine and nordic skiing and snowboarding.


General Requirements:

  • Be 14 years of age or older.
  • Pass a background check annually.
  • Complete Safe Sport training (if 18 years or older).
  • Complete in-person training in the discipline you will be teaching; requirements vary by sport.
  • Have your own equipment for the sport you are teaching (for paddling we have boats available, but you are encouraged to bring your own if you have one).


Sport Specific Requirements:

  • Adventure center – comfort at heights while in harness.
  • Alpine skiing – comfort making linked turns on intermediate terrain.
  • Hiking – comfort and knowledge on the local trails.
  • Mountain biking – comfort riding intermediate mountain bike trails at a consistent pace.
  • Nordic skiing – comfort classic skiing on intermediate terrain.
  • Paddling – comfort on and in the water, strong swimming skills, strong paddling skills.
  • Road cycling – comfort riding on the bike paths and roads in town while shifting and braking appropriately.
  • Rock climbing – prior experience beneficial but not necessary; you will need to pass a belay training before belaying participants.

There are many opportunities to volunteer with DSES outside of lessons. DSES is involved in a variety of community outreach events and volunteers are vital to representing the adaptive recreation mission throughout the year. This may involve volunteering for an event DSES hosts, and helping with set up, clean up, and logistics during the event. This may also involve volunteering at other events hosted by various organizations and representing DSES while you are there.


These events include:

  • Sierra Cycle Challenge – summer fundraiser
  • Bluesapalooza
  • Margarita Festival
  • Fourth of July Parade
  • Adopt-A-Trail
  • OCR World Championship Races
  • Extravaganza – our largest fundraiser of the year held each December

Your help is wanted helping raise funds for athletes! You can also volunteer for these events along with being a volunteer instructor.

Our office staff can always use help. As an office volunteer, you can help answer call inquiries, greet guests, and assist anyone who visits.

All proceeds support outdoor adventure and allow our students to get valuable work experience as well. Help the Second Chance Thrift Shop by volunteering today!

We need your help with cooking for some of our camps and events! For some of our winter and summer events, we ask individuals to make appetizers, desserts, and other dishes for the participants and volunteers.

Want to get involved?

Here are the steps to get started:

1. Complete the DSES Volunteer Application and Liability Release, the Move United Liability Release, and the Move United Media Release.

2. Complete a background check with NCSI.

  • You can choose to have DSES pay OR to pay yourself (cost is dependent on where you have lived in the past 5 years). Please choose ONE of the following:

3. Complete the applicable Safe Sport course.

  • This is a requirement for anyone 18 years or older working with minors and individuals under guardianship. If you are under the age of 18, you do NOT need to complete this.
  • If you have never completed a SafeSport course or if it has been more than 2 years since you completed a SafeSport course, please complete the Core Course below. (Time to complete: ~2.5 hours. **Trigger warning: this course covers a variety of topics on how to observe and report abuse**).
  • If you have completed the SafeSport Core Course within the last 2 years, please complete the Refresher Course every year below. (Time to complete: ~1 hour).

4. Read the Instructor Manual:

5. Sign up for and complete a Start-Up Training.

  • Start-Up Trainings are required for all new and returning volunteers at the start of each winter and summer season.
  • For new volunteers, you will complete a 2-day training and 1-day shadow to become eligible for volunteer shifts.
  • For returning volunteers, you will complete a 2-day refresher training.
  • Multiple Start-Up Trainings will be offered throughout the start of each season; dates will be announced prior to season-start.

6. Start volunteering!

  • Use the button below to access Volunteer Shift Calendar and sign up, record volunteer hours, check upcoming shifts, total volunteer hours, and submit voucher requests.

Any questions? Please email Mary Toomey,, or call our office at (760) 934-0791.

We look forward to having you volunteer with us!