Thursday, April 11, 2013

Volunteering for the RDA.

R.D.A = Riding for the Disabled.
Just over 3 weeks ago I was chatting to my friend Liz and she was telling me that she had recently started volunteering for the RDA. I asked her a load of questions and thought I want to be involved with that! I know bugger all about horses but I do know a fair amount about kids and a little about disabilities. For some time I've felt I needed to do something useful outside of the home, going back to working in pre-school education didn't appeal and I certainly didn't want the hassle of starting my own one back up again. I doubt my age old NNEB qualification would be recognised here, it certainly isn't in the UK anymore.
This was perfect, I contacted the centre via email and three weeks ago I started. The first day was a quiet day, many of the children had gone off to camp so only one class was expected. One class was probably enough....I was given the biggest horse that towered over me, called Hector. He did however seem placid enough, they are handpicked for the temperament and skills. All was going well, my charge was a giggly young lad who quite clearly had the devil in him that day and had me bending over near big hooves picking up cups* he accidentally on purpose kept dropping! He thought this rather amusing I think until I cottoned on, (and after a tip off from a staff member) so I had a little chat and things got back on track.....or so I thought. We were walking around quite happily then a sudden noise(workman hammering) from outside of the Arena made Hector spook and he jumped sideways! I heard a thud and nek minnit my giggly boy wasn't quite so giggly! I damned near shat myself and giggly boy jumped up and rubbing his side and said 'Holy shit!' at which point the woman who runs the centre came over and said we don't say words like that here! And he said 'Holy hell!' instead. He was a little shaken and I was assured that this can and does happen regularly...yeah but did it have to happen on my first day!! Anyway as they say if you fall off a horse, get straight back on, and so that's what happened.
The second week was less eventful, I helped with one class and then as they are having an official opening of the new arena next Monday I helped with some gardening and general tidying up, and it was much the same this week too. It's great I really love it and the people are all lovely there and the children pretty amazing, I don't ride at all, so they've one up on me already. Disability? What disabilty??

*cups: cups are placed on a tall pole, the object it to get the child to grab the cup and then walk on the horse to the next pole and place on top. Aids core strength, balance, co-ordination etc

Covered raised deck and blocks for easy mounting and the new Arena
 More of the Arena and some of the garden area being worked on for the opening

Lucas one of the very knowledgeable staff

 Where did you get that hat? The farrier doing his thing...

Ace my horse this week, he's a stunning boy and very proud of himself when he's working.

Herd of horses....course I've herd of horses! Herd of chickens?

 And wee Gummy Bear, he pulls the small carriage I believe, so very, very cute! I was about to put him in the boot of the car but Lucas saw me!! lol :D

I'll be at the Grand opening Monday with my camera! 

Oh and one more thing before I head off to bed, Joe has finished the fencing for the dog run.

The sheet of iron is temporary, the deck will be coming down soon, but until then this does the job.
Ooh look Joe taking a spa!!

The second gate at the top of the sloping path that leads to their bedroom(utility room)

 "When ya gonna let us out mum?"

"Never! Muhahahhahahah!"

Goodnight all ♥


  1. Look at your doggies, aren't they gorgeous? I bet they love their new run!
    What a worthwhile charity! x

  2. The dog enclosure is looking awesome, well done! Gumy is seriously cute!

  3. Yay you!!!!!!!

    I love your sweet dogs. They are so lucky.

  4. Wow Sue the dog run look excellent. And I would like to say a big thankyou for the volunteer work. My son is disabled and the volunteers are so wonderful and kind for giving their time. It means so much and makes such a difference to the kids and the parents and the teachers. You are making a difference to peoples lives and that is just wonderful. xxxx

    1. Aww thanks Rachael,I also know that these kids make a difference to our lives too ♥


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