The Duke Of Edinburgh Awards
Last year Sharon and other voluteers from CRC began providing pony rides to underprivileged inner city children at local summer fetes and carnivals. The events were a real eye opener as many of these children had never seen a real live pony before - never mind sat on one despite being only a few miles from the riding centre.
So a group of likeminded horsey people got to gether to form Urban - RIDE a charity group set up to fund and enable people from all sectors of the community to take up horse riding or related activities who wouldn't ordinarily be able to afford it.
During these events the older children enthusiastically helped out and were only too willing to become involved in organising and taking the nominal payment of £1 per ride. In some areas of real deprivation , the events were funded by the City Council and the £1 fee was therefore waived , and instead a token system was used . It was noted that many of the children were from BME communities, and / or from very under privileged socio – economic areas. These children were in the queue for the pony rides with their parents so it was concluded that if there were any religious or cultural barriers to these children participating in the sport of riding, the parents would not have given their assent, and indeed been so anxious to capture the moment on cameras, mobile phones or other means at their disposal. It was also noted that some of the older children wanted to come and help us with the ponies, and spent a number of hours so doing , and obviously enjoyed themselves.
This contrasts radically with the typical profile of the majority of riding school client groups – who are almost exclusively female IC1’s, from “middle class” families –
This then was the driver – we had observed the demand and the obvious enjoyment that all these children had shown – we know about the physical health benefits derived from a more active lifestyle, which horseriding offers not just through actually riding, but also through the added physical effort required in looking after the animals. From this experience, and with the effort and commitment of people who passionately believe that horses bring something special to peoples’ lives, because their own lives have been enriched through the wonder of horses.
“Our aim is to enable everyone who has the desire to ride , learn about and look after horses , the opportunity to be able to, in an enjoyable, knowledgeable and safe environment, regardless of their ability to pay."
If you would like to become a volunteer or if you think you may know a group who could benefit from our services, pleae contact
Toni Alcock on 07530252013
Sharon Davies on 07792533695
“Turns Wishes to Horses so people can ride”