Charity

UK PonyCon is very proud to support the Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA). All money donated in our charity auction goes to the RDA.

Logo of the Riding for the Disabled Association
Logo of the Riding for the Disabled Association

What is the RDA?

Riding for the Disabled Association is a national voluntary organisation that looks beyond the barriers of disability, recognises potential and celebrates achievement. It has dedicated the last 40 years to making a real and lasting difference to the lives of adults and children with physical disabilities and learning difficulties. As a charity, RDA benefits from a unique position in the charity world, working across the spectrum of disability, age range, social status and urban and rural environments. Over 18,000 RDA volunteers, at 500 Groups, give 3.5 million hours of their time annually to provide 26,500 adults and children with physical disabilities and learning difficulties with the opportunity to derive direct therapeutic benefit from horse riding and carriage driving: improving quality of life and learning life skills.

Banner showing selection of images of the RDA's work
Selection of images showing the work of the RDA

What do they do?

RDA focuses on ability, not disability, and exists to deliver therapy, achievement and enjoyment. They do this by giving individuals the opportunity to:

  • Reach therapeutic goals: improve posture and muscle tone, develop fine/gross motor movement.
  • Achieve personal ambitions: sit on a horse for the first time, learn new skills, win a Paralympic medal.
  • Combat social isolation: build relationships, enjoy events and competition, develop self-confidence.
  • Develop life skills: improve communication, take responsibility, be a team player.
  • Experience the outdoors: ride in the countryside, access rural Britain.
  • Connect with animals: bringing positivity and optimism, adding a new element to life.

What are their goals?

The RDA’s key objective is to deliver beneficial therapy (both physical and psychosocial) to their riders, carriage drivers and vaulters, facilitating development in key aspects of their lives, including health, well-being and learning, whilst giving them the chance to experience a unique degree of independence and achievement that their disabilities would usually prevent them from experiencing in everyday life. Their aim is to increase the capacity of RDA to deliver more riding, carriage driving and vaulting opportunities to more adults and children. At present the majority of RDA Groups have a waiting list: for every one person who currently rides with them another four are waiting for the opportunity to do so and to experience the associated benefits. To achieve this there they need to invest heavily in volunteer recruitment, development and training.

Group photo of RDA members saying thank you
A group photo of RDA members and volunteers saying thank you

Riding for the Disabled Association is a charity registered in England & Wales (no. 244108) and Scotland (no. SC039473).

UK PonyCon is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Riding for the Disabled Association. UK PonyCon is not a charity.