Words by Smiley Team
In possibly one of the most unique fundraising challenges ever, one woman has set out to climb a hill 100 times whilst carrying a big cuddly horse toy.
Amanda Namey has been climbing up and down the same hill with her cuddly companion, to raise money for the Riding for the Disabled Association.
In 2014, Scotland lost its leading centre for disabled riders, Bannockburn RDA and over 350 people lost access to a life changing community.
Equi-Power Central Scotland Riding for the Disabled Group was established in response and now funding is needed to create a new, purpose-built RDA centre.
That is where Amanda’s unusual fundraising challenge comes in, with the aim of raising £5,000 to contribute to the organisation’s overall goal of £141,000.
“I volunteered with RDA in a large centre for 8 years as a teenager and loved it, and even at a young age saw the value of the work,"says Amanda.
“Young people avoiding surgery, gaining confidence, retaining mobility, gaining strength, being soothed by the movement of the horse, accomplishing and achieving right from group level up to paralympic and special olympic level.”
A location has been found for the centre, with plans to incorporate facilities for the riding, carriage driving, equestrian vaulting, learning and volunteering activities.
The centre also plans a cafe, disability access playground and Changing Places toilet that would be open open to the public, providing a community hub where everyone can meet, play and enjoy time together.
Currently the organisation operates from a temporary base where their horses, referred to as ‘therapy’ horses, reside.
That is why Amanda decided she would make her walking challenge even more difficult by carrying large cuddly replicas of their horses, Laddie, Dana and Angel.
By the end of March, Amanda had completed 55 climbs up and down the hill, climbing 37,867 feet and walking 180 miles. She has raised £2,453 to date and hopes to complete all 100 climbs by Easter Sunday which will total 334 miles of climbing.
Not always walking alone, Amanda has been joined on one-off climbs by 59 different individuals, including 4 members of Green Watch Fire Brigade, members of Stirling University Equestrian club, local businesses, friends, family, participants and staff.
Amanda is one of three women crowdfunding for the #StartSomethingSpecial campaign with challenges of their own.
Mhairi and Eileen are also taking on their own physical challenges to raise money for the new, specialised Riding for the Disabled Association.
CROWDFUND: To find out more about Equi-Power Central Scotland RDA’s crowdfunding and how you can support, visit their Crowdfunder page.
DONATE: You can donate to Riding for the Disabled Association to help further the charity's mission.