Jake – A Self-Assured Young Person
Jake has Cerebral Palsy and started at RDA as a 4 year old. These days, Jake is a self-assured young person.
Riding has been instrumental in increasing his physical strength and ability, his confidence and self-esteem.
While Jake is mostly a wheelchair user, riding has helped him to maintain his ability to walk for short periods from his chair.
Jake has progressed from a therapy rider to a sport and recreation rider who can now ride independently at the walk and trot.
Interacting with the horses has also helped increase Jake’s confidence, allowing a very shy teenager to be able to speak in front of forty people for a volunteer appreciation evening.
Jake enrolled in the Gateway programme last year and worked hard to complete the unit standard 29166 and gain 22 NCEA credits.
Jake trained one of the horses, Deanna, to walk and trot while being led from his wheelchair so that he could complete one of his assessments.
He also used Deanna to complete his other assessments – for grooming, for covering, for leading in and out of paddocks, and stables etc.
Jake's good friend, Deanna
Jake has a special bond with Deanna. In Jake’s own words, ‘Deanna is patient, gentle, safe and caring’.
The enjoyment and sense of achievement that Jake gets from being at RDA, and being part of the community of volunteers, coaches, riders and families, adds a real and significant positive dimension to his life.
You can help – you can ensure that there are more coaches to meet the needs of more riders, just like Jake.
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In October 2015 I fell while jumping my young horse and sustained a spinal cord injury which has left me a T4/5 paraplegic.
I have been a horse rider since the age of 12. Before my accident I was a competitive rider competing mainly in Eventing. When I left the Burwood Spinal Unit in February 2016 I was determined to ride again, but unsure if it was even possible.”
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