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Offer to injured soldiers by Haworth Riding for the Disabled group
Seriously injured soldiers returning from Afghanistan could be helped by a riding for the disabled group.
Haworth RDA wants to provide special sessions to assist service people with their rehabilitation.
The group, whose stables are at Vale Mill Lane in Cross Roads, said the initiative would benefit wounded men and women – some of whom have lost limbs or suffered brain damage in explosions – in countless ways.
Laura Bland – an instructor, volunteer co-ordinator and the child development officer at Haworth RDA – said: “I was listening to the radio on my way into work one day and there was mention of national Armed Forces Day, which got me wondering how we could help.
“Why not offer to injured service people the same benefits we provide to any disabled person?
“It would help them with their balance, co-ordination, posture and their fitness. There would also be a social element – they would meet new people and make new friends.”
Miss Bland added: “If someone has suffered head injuries, the lessons could assist with such as their memory skills.
“I am sure they would get a huge amount out of it, and we would have the knowledge we are doing something to help them and giving a little back for what they’ve done.”
She said up to half-a-dozen horses could be in use per session, dependent on staff and volunteers.
The stables have ten horses, but one is in retirement and two are still in training.
Miss Bland, 28, said she had approached Help for Heroes about the proposed initiative, but had not yet received a response.
“The venture would probably be done through referrals from the charity,” she added.
It was revealed last month that Haworth could become the UK’s first-ever ‘Forces Friendly Community’.
The idea – to welcome and honour members of the military – was put forward by village resident Peter Hill, who helped organise this year’s successful Haworth 1940s Weekend.
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