Avon Riding Centre for the Disabled, based in Henbury, Bristol, has some pretty special horses, currently they have 25 horses with the required temperament and movements, working with over 200 disabled and 100 non-disabled riders. The Centre is also developing their Hippotherapy programme with Specialist Paediatric Physiotherapist Jo McMeechan, member of CPTRH. Hippotherapy is a form of physiotherapy aimed at helping disabled children improve their physical and mental wellbeing.
The benefit of working with horses goes beyond the physical. Horses have long been held as being uniquely effective therapy animals, with equine facillitated therapy (EFT) being utilised by therapy practitioners globally.
At Avon Riding Centre the benefits of working with horses to enhance mood and behaviour is recognised by staff, parents, and children who attend. At a recent Pony Day held at the centre the benefits were shared by newcomers to the charity. After the event one parent sent the staff at the centre the following message: From a mum who has not seen her daughter that happy for ages I just wanted to say a huge thank you from the bottom of my heart for what you did for E today, you are all stars. Being around the horses is brilliant therapy for my daughter, they have a magical calming effect on her.
If you can help Avon Riding Centre continue the vital work they do improving the lives of people with disabilities, whilst bringing happiness and physical rehabilitation to children and adults alike please donate on their JustGiving page or do contact them directly to find out more and organise a visit.
A horse costs around £4,500. Please help the Centre find some horses that can help humans!