Riding for the Disabled Association of Australia Limited and Pony Club Australia Inc. in June 2004, embarked on a joint venture under the banner of and with the support of Sports CONNECT (formerly known as Project CONNECT).
Sports CONNECT is an initiative of the Australian Sports Commission. It is about creating inclusive sporting options and pathways for people with disabilities. There are currently 30 national sports organisations participating in Inclusive Coaching (Sports CONNECT) projects.
Inclusive Coaching (Sports CONNECT) involves a range of initiatives to increase opportunities for people with disabilities to participate in sport. Its two main focus areas are:
- creating athlete pathways for people with a disability
- breaking down the barriers within disability and non-disability specific sport structures for people with a disability.
The philosophy underpinning the RDAA and PCA joint project was that both organisations would “join hands” to develop a relevant and simple disability action plan that would allow people with a disability to identify the best entry point into Equestrian Sport and participate in programs best suited to their needs.
It was recognised that some participants may start riding with RDA, move to PCA and then back to RDA allowing them to participate in all facets of regular Pony Club rally activities as well as compete at local through to International level in RDA events. Some riders with disabilities participate in Pony Club and have no initial exposure to an RDA program.
Email Kate Wilson for more information on Inclusive Coaching.