Covid 19 Notice:

All RDAI activities have been suspended since 12th March. We are currently working on protocols for a safe return to riding and carriage driving in due course. Further information will be updated on this website as soon as it becomes available.


RDAI (Riding for the Disabled Ireland) is a registered charity providing the opportunity for therapy, achievement and enjoyment to people with a range of disabilities to enjoy safe, healthy, stimulating horse-riding activities.

Volunteering involves being part of a friendly team and it is a great way to learn new skills, make new friends, keep fit, and get a fantastic feeling of satisfaction that you are making a difference.

No previous experience required, you will need to be confident around horses and work well as part of a team.

Training is ongoing within RDAI, volunteers are supported by their Group Coaches.

Role of an RDAI Volunteer

RDAI Groups take place on a weekly basis during school term time, with a majority riding in the mornings.

Typical activities for volunteers in the weekly riding sessions may include.

  • Setting up the school
  • Grooming and tacking up the horses
  • Assisting riders with mounting / dismounting and instruction
  • Side walking with riders during the sessions
  • Leading ponies

Each RDAI Group also has the following

  • Group Coach
  • Group Organiser
  • Group Secretary
  • Group Treasurer
  • First Aid Officer (renew every 3 years)
  • Children’s / Welfare Officer - Safeguarding Level 2 (to be renewed after 3 years)

Area Representatives and Area Coaches.

Support RDAI Groups within their area with progressive training and annual visits.

How to Become an RDAI Volunteer

Most RDA Ireland Groups take place on weekday mornings during school term time.

  1. Locate an RDAI Group near you - click here
  2. Contact Area Representative who will put you in contact with Group Secretary
  3. Download and Complete Volunteer Application (click here) and Referee Form (click here)
  4. On invitation, visit the relevant RDAI Group
  5. Complete Garda Vetting via H.S.I. - click here
  6. Once Garda Vetting is returned Volunteering can commence.
  7. Complete Safeguarding Level I within 3 months (renew every 3 years)

Volunteering with an RDAI Carriage Driving Group

  1. Locate an RDAI Carriage Driving Group, marked with a green star on map - click here
  2. Contact Carriage Driving Representative
  3. Download and Complete Volunteer Application (click here) and Referee Form (click here)
  4. Arrange an invitation to visit Carriage Driving Group
  5. Complete Garda Vetting via H.S.I. - click here
  6. Once Garda Vetting is returned Volunteering can commence.
  7. Complete Safeguarding 1 within 3 months of commencing.

Becoming an RDAI Coach

  1. Be a volunteer within the group for at least one year.
  2. Be at least 21 years of age.
  3. Complete Group Coach Registration form (click here) and forward to RDAI Secretary (Dilys, Lindsay, 97 Sandyford Downs, Sandyford Village, Dublin, D18R2F9) for details to be registered for insurance purposes.
  4. Start coaching under supervision of experienced group coach or Area Coach.
  5. Start filling in the Instructor Logbook, remembering to get it signed each time by the group or Area Coach.
  6. Attend at least one certified training day.
  7. Visit other groups to observe.
  8. Having completed the minimum of 20 hours of teaching practice, acquired the Group Coach Syllabus and been approved by the Area Coach, complete the Group Coach Assessment Application Form and forward to the Training Committee or Area Coach, who will arrange for assessment to take place
  9. Attain First Aid Certificate and Safeguarding Levels 1 and 2.

Area Coach may adjust some of the criteria, depending upon the candidate’s experience

(or lack of experience) in the interests of RDAI.

Support RDAI

RDAI welcomes support from the business community in the form of sponsorship, promotion of our organisation, sales of RDAI merchandise and specialist support i.e. IT.

Tax Effective Giving to RDAI

PAYE Taxpayers and Self Assessed

If you are a PAYE or Self Assessed taxpayer and you give €250 or more to RDAI during the year a CHY3 CERT (enduring form) or CHY4 CERT (annual form) should be completed and returned to:

RDAI TREASURER, Vartry Ridge, Ballymacahara, Ashford, Co. Wicklow A67 CC84

Corporate Donations

In the case of corporate donations, the company can claim a deduction for the donation as it were a trading expense. They therefore should retain the receipt from RDAI for their records and quote the RDAI charity number in order to claim tax credit.

CHY No. 6534


All roles within RDA Ireland are on a voluntary basis.

For further information contact rdaisecretary@gmail.com

RDA Ireland Locations