RIDERS and volunteers at North Pembrokeshire and Cardigan Riding for the Disabled (RDA) have said a big ‘thank you’ after receiving a National Lottery award.

The Big Lottery Fund Wales has awarded the group £2,400 towards the cost of a year’s riding lessons. RDA holds riding sessions every week in the Dyfed Riding Centre at Bridell.

The sessions are for people living with disability in the community and aim to help them grow stronger and get more out of life. The riders have a range of conditions, including autism, Downs Syndrome, cerebral palsy, muscular problems and developmental issues. Most are children but there are also adults.

The sessions help riders develop and overcome physical restrictions. As one parent says: “It does more good than physiotherapy and is a lot more fun.“

Riding also helps with mental health and well-being, for instance by increasing confidence and helping with communications and concentration at school.

Last autumn the group was thrilled to win the Lorrimer Educational Trophy. This UK national prize is awarded for breadth and variety of educational activities. All the riders have the chance to get creative and compete with other groups in the UK.

Last year, RDA took a party of riders to regional and national competitions where they won several awards as well as prizes for art, music and poetry.

To volunteer, donate or find out about riding, email judith@bluestone.eu.com.