We are delighted to announce that a group of our young Friday session volunteers, who are also students at Knox Academy, in Haddington, have won an award worth an incredible £3,000 for Muirfield Riding Therapy, through the Youth and Philanthropy Initiative (YPI).


The independent Initiative, first set up in Scotland in 2008 by The Wood Foundation, encourages active citizenship in young people. Delivered through the Scottish education, schools are responsible for, ‘directing a grant of £3000 to a local charity championed by its students through a unique programme of teamwork, research, and competition.’


Students Olivia, Ellen and Kirsty chose to support Muirfield Riding Therapy (MRT). They were up against several other Knox Academy teams, presenting their case for MRT through several rounds, to be successfully voted winners.

Olivia said,


We chose to represent MRT as it directly affects local people in our community. As I’ve been volunteering here for so long I knew straight away I wanted to represent MRT as I have seen the importance of the sessions to the children and families.

When asked how they would like to see the award used at MRT, the girls said they,


…would love to see all ponies having comfortable and up to date tack, hopefully the money can go towards providing some of this.


MRT currently has thirteen specially trained therapy ponies in its herd. Their welfare is paramount, to ensure they are able to do their important work, and part of this is ensuring they each have the right tack, correctly fitted. 

Our Friday riding therapy session leader, Susan Law said,


I am very proud of the team of young people who work hard to make riding therapy sessions such a positive experience for the children who attend. Olivia and Ellen have volunteered with us for some time and, like the others, they are so caring and compassionate. It is inspiring. I am sure their enthusiasm for what they do shone through in their presentation.”