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William the Jedi knight

By Bruce Cain (volunteer): With St Patrick's Day humour still a recent memory, the question, "How many people does it take to make a smile?" might suggest an impending joke. Igniting a smile in another person signals a connection and it's those connections that help make life's magic, whether with friends and family, colleagues, or even complete strangers.

The tip of the RDA spear is a team of 3 or 4- The horse, its leader and 1 or 2 side walkers. This team of 4 would be unable to function without more volunteers maintaining the grounds, the fences, and paddocks. And of course, the horses. All of this is enabled by admin staff coordinating logistics and management- in turn enabled by priceless donations of time, money and resources that are the RDA's lifeblood.

And so, when William sat on his horse and the team engaged him, he was suddenly engaged by a discussion about movies and began an eloquent, enthusiastic, and detailed explanation of Star Wars and Anakin Skywalker. Attention turned to exercises in the arena and led to throwing a ball into a hoop from around 5 metres. Or in William's case, missing the hoop repeatedly, his disappointment palpable.

"William, imagine that you're a young Jedi... When you throw the ball, just use the force!"

He considered the advice, took a couple of deep breaths, then focussed and took careful aim. Each and every shot thereafter, passed through the dead-centre of the hoop. William's face beamed with a smile of self-satisfaction. He'd opened an inner door, making a connection with himself.

A huge thank you to everyone involved in making William's smile. The team on the ground were just the ones lucky enough to see the magic you all helped bring into William's life.

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