East Algarve Walking Football (EAWF) and East Algarve Football Club (EAFC) are pleased to announce we have funded two children from the Faro area to give them the opportunity to experience a year of horse riding to help with their disabilities.

The money to do this was raised by members of both our clubs throughout the year. If anyone wishes to know more about the work the charity do, please see below (and feel free to visit their Facebook page at https://m.facebook.com/AlgarveRidingTherapy)

Associação Equitação Deficientes do Algarve (AEDA) 

AEDA is the only recognised and registered charitable association in the central Algarve providing riding therapy for young Portuguese adults and children with various mental and physical disabilities.

The Association is non-profit making and its aim is to help all disabled people who will, through riding therapy, benefit in their mental and physical health and happiness and to achieve maximum ability from their disability.

The benefits of the riding therapy sessions include improved concentration and coordination, posture and, importantly, self esteem. The movement of the horse is particularly valuable as the rider, in order to keep balance, has to use the almost identical muscles and joint movements that are used in walking. The horse produces 1000 movements in three dimensions in 10 minutes – this is far greater than any therapist could produce in the same time!

This has a major spin off into other activities. Riding therapy is not only enjoyable but it gives the opportunity to develop self awareness and independence as well as to develop the social skills needed to communicate with a new group of people.

They are currently supporting some 20 young people from AAPACDM (Algarvia de Pais e Amigos de Crianças Diminuidas Mentais) in Faro and Sta Barbara de Nexe by providing them with the experience of one-to-one riding therapy at Centro Hipico Vilamoura, with some of the youngsters now participating in the Special Olympics in Portugal.