Health and wellbeing

Funding level: Up to £1,000


New Lodge RDA provides riding for people with special needs in order to benefit their health and well being. As well as being fun and a good form of exercise riding is also a therapy. Physical disabilities are helped by the movement of the horse and core strength increases. Fine and gross motor skills also improve. Riding is very therapeutic for riders with learning difficulties and especially children on the Autistic spectrum. These riders form a real bond with their horse and the discipline needed during riding helps improve behaviour. Above all self esteem grows as these children learn a new skill, which many of their peers can't do. Parents, carers and teachers report improved listening skill and also children following instructions better, all due to the riding lessons.
New Lodge RDA cannot exist without the help of a band of volunteers coming from all age groups and this leads to a real community spirit at the Centre. Most of the volunteering involves leading the horses on the rides with the children. School children at the weekends give up their time to help the younger riders and then often use the hours towards gaining D of E awards. Often our participants like to volunteer once they become experienced enough, this year one of our riders gained an award for his riding achievements and also sports personality of the the year at a recent event. He is now hoping to follow a career in the equestrian field.
New Lodge RDA operates six days a week all year round with riders from 4 years of age up to adult. We have approximately sixty riders every week and carry out over 2,000 rides each year. Riders come from all the surrounding Boroughs and we cater for schools, colleges, adult day centres and individuals. The weekend sessions also give siblings a chance to join in making it a family day out.
There are thirteen horses and ponies in the Centre. They are a range of sizes and temperaments to cater for all our riders from extremely nervous beginners to more advanced riders who compete Regionally or Nationally. They all have to be carefully selected and trained in order to cope with the unusaul circumstances they encounter during our rides.
Riding hats are essential for the safety of all our riders. Although we have very few accidents they can never be ruled out when horses are concerned and a properly fitted hard hat is essential. These can be very costly so we provide hats for riders who cannot afford their own. These get lots of use and after a while become very tatty and need to be replaced. We are getting to this stage now and we would like to get a grant to replace the oldest hats with new ones adhering to the current safety standards. A grant from AVIVA would enable us to replace the hats and keep the future riders safe.

New Lodge Riding for the Disabled Association

Moment of Pride

I am proud that;
New Lodge RDA gives people with special needs the opportunity to achieve through riding.
To see the horses and riding change people's lives.
To see so many people, especially young people, give up their time to help our cause without asking for any reward.
The remarkable horses

Location: Eltham, London, United Kingdom