Riding for the Disabled Association of Dubai
Riding for the Disabled Association of Dubai (RDAD) is a not for profit organisation that utilises horses to achieve a variety of therapeutic goals in order for students to develop their physical, cognitive and emotional abilities.
Established In 1998, Riding for the Disabled's patron, Her Highness Sheikha Hassa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum launched the program by donating 3 of her horses to be used for therapeutic riding, under the directorship of Satish Seemar.
With approximately 70 children currently enrolled in the riding programme. Examples of riders’ disabilities include autism, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, spina bifida, mental retardation, and various learning disabilities.
RDAD is based at Desert Palm where Ali Albwardy, RDAD’s President, provides facilities. RDAD runs 15 therapeutic riding sessions a week. The programme is run by a small dedicated team of six, consisting of a Team Manager, two NARHA Qualified Therapeutic Riding Instructors, a stable assistant, two grooms and ten horses, some of which are retired polo ponies. In addition, there is a dedicated pool of approximately 45 volunteers that help run the programme.