Welcome back to Term 1 everyone.Â Apologies that the newsletter is late but I have been having technical problems with my laptop.
Itâ€™s been a good start to the year with 37 children booked to ride with us this term.
We started riding on Monday 8th January and our last day of riding this term will be Tuesday 30th March.
Many thanks to Sandra Lilo for looking after the horses over the summer break.Â They have all come back fit and well.Â Many thanks also to Fu Lilo and Phil Patterson who have set up permanent electric fencing in the orchard and holding paddocks.Â The fencing was paid for by Pony Club and the labour supplied by Fu and Phil.
Many thanks to Head Coach Pia for planning all of the rides for this term.
Thanks to all the families who have paid their donations.Â This pot of money is vital and goes towards the care of our horses.Â To make life easier for our hardworking and dedicated treasurer Shirley Furneaux, may we politely request that all donations are paid in the first two weeks of term.
Last but not least a big thank you to all the families who brought our team of volunteers gifts and cards at Christmas.Â It meant a lot to everyone.
West Auckland Centre for Riding Therapy
A big thank you to committee members Shirley Furneaux, Jenny Clifford and Norma Hayward who spent the run up to Christmas completing our Lottery Grant Board application.Â We are applying to the Lottery Grant Board (in the first round) for funds to complete a Feasibility Study.Â The Feasibility Study will assess options to achieve our objective of a West Auckland Centre for Riding Therapy.Â This has to be prepared by an independent consultant.Â The consultant will assess whether the project is viable, should it be funded and what are the alternatives.
So out went the Christmas shopping and in came form filling.Â The result fewer Christmas presents but further clarity and enthusiasm for our goal of a West Auckland Centre for Riding Therapy.Â The process involved preparing a document called a Request for Proposal which went out to three consultants.Â Two consultants pitched for the business and were interviewed.Â The one selected by our committee in February was Craig Jones of Visitor Solutions.Â Craig Jones will be appointed dependent on us receiving funding from the Lottery Grant Board.Â Our final application wasÂ submitted on 5 March and we shall hear the result in June this year.
We shall keep you posted on progress.
RDA Awareness WeekÂ Â 25 Apr â€“ 1 May 2010
RDA Awareness week is coming up!Â Our dedicated volunteers Sandra, Shirley F, Cathy and Gaylene have all kindly volunteered to pound the streets of the CBD to raise money for us.Â They did a fabulous job last year and I am sure they will this year too.
Kakogawa Student Visit
Once again we were delighted to welcome eight special needs children and their teachers from Japan.Â A group of children come to New Zealand every year as part of an exchange programme organised by Waitakere City Council.Â Â The children came in the afternoon of the first day of term.Â A big thank you to all the volunteers who stayed behind or came along specially to help.Â The kids had a great trek around the paddocks led by Sandra.Â It was an extremely hot afternoon but very enjoyable.Â The children presented us with some lovely origami paper models and a thank you card which is on the notice board.
Have you all seen and sat on our new memorial bench!? It faces the main paddock and was kindly supplied by Waitakere City Council, and organised by our volunteer Dave.Â The bench is now displaying a beautiful wooden plaque very kindly supplied by Jason Holder who did the lovely carving.Â The seat commemoratesÂ some of our very special RDA ponies who we have lost over the last couple of years.
Just a quick update on the horses. Henderson RDA currently own four horses.Â Danny, Markie, Kaimani and Angel.Â The rest of the team are kindly lent to us from members of the Pony Club.Â They are Susie, Dream, Decima and Rosie.Â Dream and Rosie have been with us for years but Susie and Decima joined us last year.
Decima who is looking good for twenty years old is a pretty 14.1hh liver chestnutÂ Â Ngaio and mum Catherine Balfour have owned Decima for ten months.Â They bought her from the Remuera Pony Club. Ngaio has been enjoying learning Natural Horsemanship with Decima and is also working towards her pre-D Certificate at Pony Club.
The lovely Susie is a 15hh grey mare and is lent to us by Anna and Sylvia Stringfellow.Â Anna is enjoying working towards her D+ Certificate at Pony Club on Susie.
Both Decima and Susie are wonderful RDA ponies.Â They have lovely manners and the kids love them.Â We are all very grafeful to have them on the team.Â So a huge thank you to the Balfours and the Stringfellows for allowing us to use Decima and Susie.
Christian Care Visit
We had a visit from approximately forty elderly people from Christian Care in Henderson.Â They came along on a busy Tuesday and watched our second ride, patted the horses, chatted to the volunteers and children and listened to a short talk from Norma on our work.Â They kindly donated $96 which was gratefully received and will go towards the care of our horses
Jack Bird was among hundreds of young athletes who swam cycled and ran as part of the Weetbix Triathalon on Sunday 21st March.Â Well done Jack!
Annual General Meeting (AGM)
Our AGM will be held on Wednesday 21 April at 9.30 am at the clubrooms.Â This is when committee for the next 12 months will be elected.Â Our committee meetings are held monthly and we discuss the running and future planning of our group. If any volunteers or parents would like to know more about our committee, please contact our Secretary Shirley BoumeesterÂ at firstname.lastname@example.org or 827 3087.
National RDA Office Fundraiser
Thank you to Sandra, Shirley F and Cathy who sold 33 raffle tickets for $5 each for the brand new Bates Saddle worth over $4000.Â The raffle tickets have been sent to National Office and the prize will be drawn soon.Â We shall keep you posted on the winner.
We have introduced a small trading table where volunteers and parents/caregivers can donate small items to be sold, eg jam, books, small plants or seedlings or excess home grown veg and fruit.Â All proceeds will go towards our running costs.
A big thank you to those who contribute to the morning teas for the volunteers by bringing in baking or sandwiches.Â Some of our volunteers get here very early in the morning and are pretty hungry by 11 oâ€™clock so they really appreciate a good scone or muffin before they go back out for ride 3.Â A big thank you to Pat Munro, Ashleighâ€™s nanna who brings in a plate of delicious baking every Monday.