Jane Reynolds, mother of 2 young children, volunteer since January 2013, lives in Clapham, works part-time in IT, loves adventure, the outdoors and horses.
I started volunteering at this local riding stables in January 2013 after looking for a charity I could volunteer at in my spare time. It is truly astonishing to find a riding school with 8 stables, an arena, a paddock and teaching rooms in the centre of Brixton, a stone’s throw away from the Underground station. I have been awestruck and inspired by not only the staff who run the charity but the club members, all local children and the children who come every week from special needs schools in the area. The commitment that the club members show really does inspire when some of these kids will sometimes have very little stability in their lives. When I work there on Tuesday mornings, I help prepare the yard and horses and then lead the horses around the arena during the lessons. The children I work with come from a local special needs school, and have behavioural and / or learning difficulties such as Autism. The change I have witnessed first-hand in these children from their first lesson is amazing, horses have such a calming influence on them and they positively thrive with the contact. There is not just the joy of riding for these children who mostly will never have seen a horse before coming here, but they learn all about stable, yard and horse management – mucking out, grooming, tacking up, and where appropriate the theory.
This charity certainly ticked all the boxes for me, combining working with children with special needs, (Harry my son has ADHD), working with horses, and good old fashioned hard graft which on a cold winters morning can challenge the best of us. Ebony is truly one of the most amazing charities I have ever come across and I am immensely proud to be part of their volunteer force and hope to be for many years to come.”