Dikes raises £2,000 for local disabled riders

Independent supermarket Dike & Son of Stalbridge last week handed over cheques to the value of donated £2,000 to benefit disabled riders in Dorset and Somerset.
With the help of its customers, the award-winning family-run store has been collecting money for both the Milton Abbas and Henstridge Riding for the Disabled Association groups from the sale of specific products in its superstore, through the charity initiative Making A Difference €œ Locally (MADL).
Dike & Son is possibly the only supermarket in the country with a dedicated horse tether positioned outside so that riders can visit the shop with ease.
Organisers from both riding groups gathered at Dikes new conservatory extension to the cafƒ© for the presentation. Director Andy Dike said: Living in a rural community most of us know of someone who has suffered injuries while riding. The RDA do fantastic therapeutic work with people who are recovering, as well as bringing horses into the lives of others, including children, who have never had the opportunity to ride. Henstridge and Milton Abbas cater for very different needs, which is why we decided to split the fund.
The Milton Abbas group enables children aged five upwards with physical or learning disabilities such as autism to have contact with ponies, experience riding and playing games on horseback. Although the group is part of the RDA Federation, it has to be financially independent and this groups running costs amount to more than £4,500 each year.
The Henstridge RDA group has a very unusual helper €œ Bob the mechanical horse, a gentle introduction to riding for those who have never been on horseback, or who are recovering from injury. This form of exercise can be beneficial for all sorts of problems including strokes, MS and cerebral palsy, as well as for people who have had hip replacements.
The MADL charity was formed in May 2008 by Nisa-Todays, with the intention of assisting more than 2,000 independent retailers throughout the UK with raising money for their local communities. The charity works by allocating a specified amount of the cost of certain products promoted in-store to the retailers MADL charity fund. The previous local charity to benefit was Julias House childrens Hospice in Dorchester.
Nisa-Todays is the UK's leading member-owned organisation, providing benefits to independent retailers and wholesalers in food and drink markets.
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Contact Adam Vincent, Dike & Son Store Manager on 01963 362204 for more information or visit www.dikes-direct.co.uk
For information on MADL visit http://www.makingadifferencelocally.com
For information on the work of the RDA, visit http://www.riding-for-disabled.org.uk

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Picture shows: Dike & Son Director Andy Dike presenting Henstridge RDA members (left) and Milton Abbas RDA representatives (right) with a cheque each for £1,000.