What We Do - Bridgend County RDA

Bridgend County Group RDA is a member group of the UK National charity The Riding for the Disabled Association Incorporating Carriage Driving.

We receive no formal grants or funding and rely wholly on financial assistance from corporate or individual supporters together with regular fundraising activities to allow us to fulfill our obligations and ensure our future.

We owe our existence to John and Barbara Ladbrooke who founded the Bridgend Coity RDA Group over 50 years ago at their farm in Coity, Bridgend. Following their sad deaths and the sale of Longacre in 2010 we had to vacate Longacre Farm but were fortunate to be offered alternative facilities at Pencoed College in September 2010 which is where we continue to be based.

We run 4 x 45 minute sessions to local schoolchildren in school term time each Monday and Friday from 9:30 am until 12:30 pm plus we provide individual lessons on Saturday mornings and currently provide riding opportunities to over 60 adults and children with physical and learning disabilities.

A wonderful and positive statement by Sara Coffin, Yard Manager at Pencoed College.
“We were delighted to host the RDA group at our Pencoed Campus – it is fantastic to be involved with such a keen group of riders who clearly take so much away from the sessions. We take real pride in the standard of both our teaching staff and facilities, and being able to put them use for the benefit of organisations like the RDA makes a difference to us all, as well as being great fun!”

Bridgend County Group RDA’s main purpose is to provide horse related activities to local adults and children with disabilities in a safe, fun, all-inclusive environment and we truly believe in the therapeutic benefits and sense of achievement the interaction with horses provides.

We aim to improve our riders: mobility. co-ordination, muscle control and strength, balance, self-esteem.

We work on providing our riders with life long skills such as: listening, respect, patience and       communication.

In our sessions we encourage: confidence growth, independence, self-worth, self belief.

We want our riders to: learn a new skill, learn about horses, experience new sounds, touches and smells. conquer fears by believing in themselves and trusting others.

We aim to improve social skills by: Interacting with new people, Following instructions, Learn and use the language to communicate with the horse; woah, walk on, trot on.

We do all of the above by incorporating exciting activities and exercises in the lesson where our riders learn basic riding skills, they will learn facts about their horse and tack, and play games. Some of our advanced riders will have the opportunity to learn to ride independently.

We also work with our schools to make cross curricular links that will tie in with the curriculum the children  work from in school; this includes numeracy and literacy.