The Brae is a local, independent charity affiliated to the national Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA) and the newest member to the Dundee Social Enterprise Network! This purpose built centre provides horse riding and carriage driving lessons for around 100 disabled riders per week, ranging from 3 to 78 years of age.
The structured lessons are designed to work on balance, muscle tone, co-ordination and fine motor skills, though riders are rarely aware that they are working so hard, as it is all such good fun.
‘Trotting outside was like running with the wind against my face…a fun way of doing physio as you don’t even realise that you are doing your exercises’.
The interaction between the rider, horse, instructor and volunteers helps to improve communication skills as well as building confidence, self esteem and new friendships. For many riders, this may be the first time they are taller than everyone else!
“We have noticed a significant change in her confidence, posture, core balance, strength and stability amongst other things”.
Rider, Casey’s dad
The Brae was the first centre in Scotland to employ a physiotherapist, which allows them to provide Hippo therapy (physiotherapy on horseback). For those unable to take part in riding, there is the opportunity to do carriage driving, where along with an instructor they can drive the pony and carriage in the outdoor arena or along the farm tracks around the Brae.
The Brae is open 6 days per week and relies on the input and support of its 150 volunteers, without them the centre could not operate. Volunteers are needed with a wide range of skills to make the groups work, not just those who help with horse riding but also fundraisers and DIY’ers. The Brae’s aims are to provide opportunities, either as a rider or as a volunteer, to as many people as possible. It works with a variety of organisations, such as Helm, Barnardos, Project Scotland, Triage and Job Centre Plus to provide work placements for individuals to develop employability skills.
“Volunteering at The Brae is definitely benefiting me. My self confidence is gradually increasing and I find working with the horses has a calming influence on me. I love seeing the riders’ faces light up and knowing that the rest of the volunteers and I have helped make this happen.”
To get in touch, telephone 01382 776880, or checkout our Facebook page The Brae and LIKE to follow!
The Brae Riding for the Disabled
1 Linlathen Grove
Telephone: 01382 776880
SCRAPantics c.i.c. is a new scrapstore in Dundee. We are now in our third month of business and have a growing membership and bookings of workshops in the diary. Last month we went out to Coupar Angus Primary to create a trash fashion show! We also celebrated Dundee’s Women’s Festival in a collaborative felt making session with ‘How it Felt’ Debz a local puppeteer, and prospective Social Entrepreneurs through DSEN, thanks!
We have created a store of recycled materials that can be used in art and design projects by being sold very cheaply to local students, community groups and schools. Materials could be off- cuts, seconds or end of lines, and are donated by local manufacturers and retailers, saving resources from the landfill and improving learning outcomes by broadening the-ranges of materials available. Examples are as varied as building materials, like wood, waterproof membranes and piping to fabric, paper and card off cuts, old stamps, end of line materials, jute sacking, wood veneers, sticky plastic or foam, out of date sterile bandaging, tools and ribbons and even a load of mannequins, and small household furnishings.
We have a number of businesses already donating high end materials and are open to the public by appointment or ‘mishap’! Thankfully we managed to secure funding from both Firstport and DSEN, and now have premises located next to the ‘Wasps’ studios at Meadow Mill. I have a van in which we can collect donations making it easier for businesses. We offer craft workshops in and out of house and provide voluntary opportunities to people out of work at present. We are really all about celebrating the communities we live in by creating networks of creative projects and providing a diverse range of sustainable materials. We hope by posting pictures, tweeting and other social media streams to advertise the businesses that support us, in a way of saying ‘thank you’.
We are open by appointment or on a Wednesday 10am-4pm or Thursday noon-6 pm, please get in touch, with Sandy 07519367490 or checkout our Facebook page Scrapantics and LIKE to follow!