Riding Lessons Tees Valley - Riding For The Disabled Tees Valley

RDA, horse riding, riding lessons, riding lessons tees valley, riding for the disabled tees valley, riding for the disabled, pony care days, volunteering, dressage clinics, NVQ Training, show jumping, competitions, charity

RDA, horse riding, riding lessons, riding lessons tees valley, riding for the disabled tees valley, riding for the disabled, pony care days, volunteering, dressage clinics, NVQ Training, show jumping, competitions, charity

PRESS RELEASE: DISABLED RIDING CENTRE PREPARING TO RE-OPEN 

 

The Riding for the Disabled Association’s Unicorn Centre at Hemlington, Middlesbrough is one of the local charities in the Tees Valley that has struggled to survive during the Coronavirus epidemic.

With 18 horses and ponies delivering riding and therapy to about 200 participants each week, assisted by 16 staff and 100 volunteers, it  relies entirely on income from activities and fundraising to raise £300,000 each year to cover its costs.All this came to an abrupt stop.  No lessons, no competitions, no events. No income from this at all.

However, the Government’s recent change of regulations now means that indoor equestrian arenas can be used once again from 4 July in England.

As a first step the Centre will re-start hosting British Dressage MyQuest competitions from Sunday 19 July.

 

Centre Manager Claire Pitt said, “We’re delighted that we can make the first tentative steps towards normality, and holding competitions will re-start a trickle of income once again. We have lots to do to comply with all the Covid-19 regulationsfor re-opening, but the team are working very hard to get it all in place.

She continued, “We’re so grateful for the huge number of practical and financial donations we’ve had, but we still need ongoing Covid-19 safety equipment as well as financial donations to get us through the next few months. It’s going to be a long time before we are operating at pre-Covid levels.”

The next step is to start offering lessons once again to some participants, and staff at the Centre are busy preparing the horses to start their fittening programme to ensure they are fit after their four months’ holiday.       

Even Unicorn Centre mascot Spider has been helping with the preparations.  He has authored a booklet to explain to riders what may be different when they start riding again.  He engaged Trustee, senior coach and amateur artist Judy Preston to illustrate the booklet to demonstrate how coaches and volunteers will look wearing PPE and how lessons will be run.

Judy said, “It was good fun combining my two favourite occupations, working with our participants and my art work. We hope that this booklet will reassure riders that riding will be safe but still lots of fun.  So many are desperate to return to riding: their physical and mental health has been severely affected by the lockdown, and they urgently need to have contact with horses again."

The Centre’s fundraising “Feed and Feet Appeal” can be accessed at www.virginmoneygiving.com/fund/feedandfeet

It  is also encouraging people to help raise funds by shopping through Amazon Smile and EasyFundraising. 

For further information call the Centre on 01642 576222 or visit their Facebook page RDAUnicornCentre.

Issued 29.06.20

 

 

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Riding Lessons & Services

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The Unicorn Centre provides riding lessons and therapy for children and adults from 5 years old, both disabled and able-bodied. The Centre has 20 horses and ponies, carefully chosen for their temperament, size and ability to work with disabled riders, and a hoist facility for mounting onto ponies is available for wheelchair users... read more