30 April 2020
Cotswold Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA) supports over two hundred children, young people and adults, all living with mental or physical disabilities, to benefit from spending time with horses: gaining new skills, staying active, improving their confidence and building relationships with others.
‘Our “Tea with a Pony” sessions for people living with dementia and other disabilities, welcomed two hundred new participants and their families last year, said Claire Jenkins, General Manager. We were hoping to significantly increase this number as the weather improves.’
‘However, following Government and RDA UK advice, we have suspended all our activities until further notice. Of course, our herd of fifteen very special horses are still being well cared for by our dedicated equestrian team.
‘We know that what we do makes a real difference and changes lives. We recently had this feedback from a parent:
"Hazel, has Downs syndrome & Autism and spends much of her life in a wheelchair and is largely non-verbal, riding literally gives her a new perspective as well as a voice! She becomes unusually vocal and animated on a pony and loves to share her delight with the volunteers who walk alongside as she rides. For her sister, Miriam, who has Dyspraxia & Autism, riding has brought her a sense of achievement and a huge boost to her self-esteem. It is helping her to overcome anxiety as well as attempt new challenges outside of RDA. Instead of being the child who couldn’t do many physical activities she has found something she can do and do well! Knowing that my girls can continue riding in the holidays and not have a long wait for this kind of input is invaluable. Thank you Children in Need and Cotswold RDA for giving us this lifeline!"
‘So closing has had a huge impact for us financially. We depend on the income we earn from lessons – an average of £2,000 per week – to keep us going day to day. The horses need feeding and regular visits from the farrier and sometimes sadly the vet. Thank goodness for the funding we receive from Cheltenham Lottery. Our amazing supporters are keeping us going and through people’s generosity we hope for even more support at this challenging time!’
Miriam and Hazel
For more information, please contact: Claire Jenkins, General Manager
Cotswold Riding for the Disabled
Telephone 01242 584420
Email [email protected]
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