On Friday 5 October, Amber Rudd MP visited the Fairlight Hall branch of the Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA). During the visit, Amber was given a riding demonstration that was put on by some of the association’s members - all of whom were keen to show-off what horse-riding skills they have acquired since attending riding lessons provided by RDA. Amber also heard first-hand from the members present about how RDA has helped to build their self-confidence by enabling them to acquire skills through new sporting opportunities.
RDA is a registered charity, which was established just over three years ago. It is the newest group in the South East, operates full-time and is situated in the grounds of Fairlight Hall just outside of Hastings. The goal of the RDA is to help the mentally and physically disabled by improving awareness, communication, confidence and decision-making through horse riding and caring for horses.
It is a relaxed and fun environment where students not only get to ride horses and compete in National Championships, but also get hands-on experience with horse care.
During the past year, the RDA has been actively fundraising and has received generous grants from The Gregg's Foundation, Fairlight Parish Council, the Rother Rural Trust, the Kowitz Family Foundation, and with building supplies generously donated by STAMCO. They have an active group of supporters and volunteers, and would love to hear from anyone who would be interested in joining the group.
“It was a real pleasure to meet with both volunteer instructors and members of RDA. Organisations such as RDA provide an invaluable opportunity of enabling people with disabilities to excel in sport. Success in one area can contribute significantly to success in other walks of life, as individuals are emboldened to take on new challenges and set their sights on achieving new goals.” Amber added: “I would like to thank the members of RDA for putting on such a first-class show for me and would urge those who have not yet done so to get involved.”
Photo: Amber is pictured with members and volunteer instructors of Riding for the Disabled Association at Fairlight Hall.