Warwick charity launching major fundraising dinner at Ricoh Arena

RDA Dinner

A national charity near Warwick that enriches the lives of thousands of disabled children and adults through horses is launching a new sports dinner in the region to raise much-needed funds.

Riding for Disabled Association (RDA) – whose horses benefit the lives of 25,000 children and adults at 500 locations across the UK – is hosting its Charity Sports Dinner at Ricoh Arena on Friday 20 March; with Rugby World Cup referee Wayne Barnes attending as a headline speaker.

RDA’s dinner at The Ricoh comes a year after the organisation moved its headquarters to newly-built premises at the RDA National Training Centre, on Old Warwick Road in Shrewley.

Dinner organisers are hoping to attract up to 300 guests as they aim to raise around £20,000 on the night to support their Shrewley base – which is home to 12 horses who provide therapy to over 85 disabled individuals every week.

Money raised on the night will also go towards funding essential equipment at the centre to help users access their horse and to train more RDA Coaches, for which there is huge demand.

Joining Wayne Barnes on stage at the RDA Charity Sports Dinner, sponsored by Howden, is comedian and former Sky Sports presenter Paul Boardman, and ex-BBC rugby correspondent Ian Robertson.

Sal Atkinson, Fundraising and Events Manager at Riding for Disabled Association, said: “The difference that our horses make to so many disabled people’s lives shouldn’t be underestimated – riding helps develop core strength and co-ordination, builds confidence and social skills.

“The RDA volunteers and coaches are hugely supportive and riders often say it’s like having a second family where they make new friends and can enjoy time with animals.

“The funds we raise at The Ricoh will go towards ensuring the centre in Shrewley supports the region’s disabled community, and by assembling a star-studded line-up at the dinner, we are hopeful of generating a healthy fundraising total.

“Wayne, Paul and Ian will all be speaking on stage in their own style to talk about how they feel sport has the power to change lives – just like our horses do for thousands of children and adults every week – and we’d love to see as many people as possible there on the evening.”

Tickets for the evening, which starts at 7pm, cost £65 each and includes a three-course-meal. For more information and to book email satkinson@rda.org.uk.