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March 2022


And thank you for being a friend, supporter, sponsor, rider or volunteer. 

2022 has started out reasonably well despite Covid 19 and the Omicron wave that swirls arounds us.  We reopened for riding in early February, complete with temperature-scanning and vaccine pass checking, but our wonderful volunteers and staff have taken it all in their stride – so an opening round of applause for them is well deserved!

This quarterly community newsletter aims to inform you about what we are up to across the group and without apology ask for your help ...  North Shore Riding for the Disabled is able to operate only through your kind and generous assistance and financial support.

Our rider numbers are at our current maximum capacity and we have a wait list of over 20 riders waiting eagerly for the opportunity to join our riding programmes.  We would love them to join but to do that we need more volunteers, horses and funding so we can open for an additional day of riding programmes.  Maybe you can help?

To learn about the programmes we run, our horses, the great work being delivered by our volunteers plus updates on some of the exciting capital projects we have underway please read on .....

Tim Lofts

Coach's Brief

Hi all, it's good to be back for 2022! The barn is open for riding, the weather has been great, the horses are looking good, and everyone is enjoying riding through the bush walk and paddocks under the shade of the trees.

We're thrilled to see many riders returning and many more new riders joining us for the first time.  I have coached many riders over the years, and I see first-hand the benefits of horse-riding.

We offer three rider programmes at North Shore Riding for the Disabled. These are the Therapy, Education and the Sport and Recreation programmes.

The THERAPY strand is for riders who are under the support of a medical practitioner or therapist. These riders have specific needs and in coordination with their medical professional we can offer a programme that benefit their individual requirements.

The EDUCATION strand is for riders that come with the support of a school, and they have specific educational needs. These riders participate in a programme that align with their learning milestones.

The SPORT & RECREATION strand is for riders who want to participate in a sport or activity that is not normally available to them. Many of these riders struggle to fit into mainstream sport and so horse riding gives them a sense of achievement and pride.

There is a common thread between all these programmes. They all have a physical, social, emotional and an intellectual element. It is the unique combination of these elements that make therapy horse riding such a successful programme.

If you know someone who will benefit from these programmes, go to our website for more information.

Miranda Seow 



Farewell Rocky

It’s with heavy hearts we must share that our beloved Rocky passed over the Rainbow Bridge on Christmas morning.   Rocky had the herd around him and passed peacefully.   

Rocky was loved and cared for till the very end ❤️❤️❤️

From all of us at North Shore Riding for the Disabled, we offer an especially big thank you to the Horse care team, for their dedication and hard work.  

Introducing Lenny!

Lenny photobombed our feature article on Rocky back in June 2021 so it's appropriate we introduce him properly.   Lenny is currently the smallest of our herd standing at just 12’2hh or 124cm (A horse’s height is measured from the highest point of the wither down to the sole of the foot)

He is predominantly Grey (white) in colour but does have some pale flecks of chestnut in his coat that make him even cuter. Lenny is 21 years old and in his life has been a pony club pony, a showjumper and a show-pony!

Lenny has very fancy moves that he likes to show off in the paddock on occasion, just letting us know he’s still got it!   He is a very valued and much-loved member of our herd; he is amazing with the children and loves the attention. Lenny is also our Christmas pony, stepping up to the role of helping Santa and posing for photo opportunities with his rider friends.

Lenny’s calm and quiet nature is perfect for our nervous children meeting the horses for the first time. He never puts a foot wrong and is also perfect for teaching our new volunteers the ropes.   


Lenny is quite cheeky but we love him and he gets spoilt rotten! but we don't think he’s complaining!

PS – We are always on the lookout for new horses to add to our herd, so if you know of someone who might be selling – or willing to donate a likely new recruit, please let us know.

Lenny and carrots.jpg

Sensory Trail

In 2021 we began creating a new Sensory Trail to take advantage of a beautiful area of bush that runs alongside a stream and is adjacent to our entry and barn. The sensory trail is designed to provide both horses and riders with different audible and visual sensory experiences. 

This is achieved by paving the trail with different surface materials including a timber bridge, stone chip, concrete pavers and crushed concrete aggregate.  The trail winds through trees providing welcome shade during the Summer months and a peaceful experience all year round.  Thanks also to the volunteers and rider families who created colourful artworks to decorate the trail.  All of this combines to provide added interest and riding dynamics to our rider’s experience.

The hard work has been going on during lockdowns and over the summer holidays to bring the trail to completion and it’s official opening was held on March 11th with ribbon-cutting duties handled by Simon Watts MP for North Shore and attended by local representative John Watson - Auckland Councillor,  two members of the Hibiscus and Bays Local Board, and Sally Wenley, New Zealand Riding for the Disabled Board Member, we also welcomed a crowd of around 40 people.  There were a couple of short speeches, followed by an inaugural ride over the new Trail, followed by morning tea.

Thank you to all the volunteers, and external sponsors that contributed to getting this major project 'across the line', with  special mentions to Cyril Anderson, Jeff Stewart and our intrepid gardener, Robyn Woolley, who have put untold hours and huge effort into the new Trail.

We now have a great new facility for our riders to enjoy for many years to come!

Raising the roof!

Followers of our Facebook Page will have seen an announcement of a fundraising campaign by our Charitable Trust, to raise funds to put a roof over our Arena, allowing riding to take place in all weather.  

It’s an unfortunate reality that rain sometimes forces cancelation of riding completely or forces us to ride in our barn, which isn’t as good a space for the riders.


Our Trust has set up a specific Give-a-Little Page to help get the necessary funds together for this huge improvement in our facilities.  They are applying for Grant Funding wherever they can but as the saying goes, ‘Every little helps!’ so if you can, please donate by clicking the link below.

Arena roof - Dunedin.jpg

This shows the same design of roof installed at Dunedin RDA

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Community Open Day

Our planned Community Open day was unfortunately derailed by Covid, however we do plan to reschedule this later in 2022 when Covid and time permits.  We'll keep you posted.

Meet some of our riders ...

Wilson School on Auckland's North Shore brings students to go horse riding on Mondays and they are incredibly positive about their students experiences saying recently  "It is a wonderful experience for our young people and we are very thankful to the amazing team @ North Shore RDA for providing our tamariki with this opportunity!"

Thank you Wilson School for your support 😊

Thank you .... and more help needed!

We exist as an organisation based purely on the wonderful generosity of our volunteers, staff, our rider families and the many community and corporate sponsors who provide financial support through donations or sponsorship and we say thank you very much to all of you! 

Covid has definitely created many anxious moments for us and thankfully we have so far weathered its disruptions and plan to continue to strive to fulfil our strategic goal - ‘Reaching More Riders – Changing More Lives’

However to do that we need more volunteers to allow us offer more places for riders.  We also need more horses and of course any funding that finds it's way to us will be put to good work to support our rider programmes.


If you think you can help, please visit our website to learn how  or visit our Give a little page to make a donation here.

2022 Calendar.jpg

Get your 2022 NSRDA Calendar now.  Contact us by email to

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