On Tuesday 18th November we were very lucky to have Alex Thomas from the Wilton branch of ‘Riding for the Disabled’ (RDA) to talk to us about the work they do to help young people with disabilities.
Alex told us how the Wilton branch moved to its present site just over ten years ago after starting out originally in the grounds of Heal House. It was at Heal House the charity began helping injured service men to recover from the injuries incurred during the First World War.
We were also told the heart-warming story of the little girl who was blind and unable to walk. She was sat sideways on the back of a pony as it was led around the yard. This sideways rocking movement helped to mobilise her hip joints, which in turn helped her to walk.
RDA is run by volunteers and is financed solely through donations; this is one of the reasons why we chose to support such a worthwhile charity. Francis House presented Alex with a cheque for £280 which we raised on our House Day, held the day before the feast of St Francis. The money will be used to adopt a pony for each of our five tutor groups with the remainder going towards the running costs of the centre.
To further our links with the RDA we are hoping to take a group of KS3 pupils to the Nativity play performed by the riders at the Centre. It will be an opportunity for students to see the ponies they have adopted as well as watching what I am sure will be a truly inspiring spectacle.
Over the next few weeks Francis House will be collecting food donations. Each tutor group will produce a hamper to deliver to various charities throughout the city.
A huge thank you to all the members of Francis House who contributed in any way to these events.