RDAQ Championships Proud Rider

About RDAQ

In 1964 Peter and June McIntyre created the first riding program for people living with disability in Australia. Originally located at their home in Kenmore, lessons were run by June and Peter with the help of family and friends using their own two ponies.

Demand for the program grew rapidly across Queensland and Australia. In 1985 the Riding for Disabled Association of Queensland (RDAQ) was founded with five foundation member centres. Today there are RDAQ affiliated centres located throughout Queensland. RDAQ is a member of the national Riding for the Disabled Association of Australia (RDAA).

All work of the RDAQ is underpinned by the principles of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disability. These principles are:

  • Respect for inherent dignity, individual autonomy including the freedom to make one’s own choices, and independence of persons
  • Non-discrimination
  • Full and effective participation and inclusion in society
  • Respect for difference and acceptance of persons with disabilities as part of human diversity and humanity
  • Equality of opportunity
  • Accessibility
  • Equality between men and women
  • Respect for the evolving capacities of children with disabilities and respect for the right of children with disabilities to preserve their identities.

RDAQ is a registered not for profit incorporation and registered charity. The organisation reports to, and is bound by the requirements of, the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission; the Queensland Office of Fair Trading; and the Riding for the Disabled Association of Australia. The 2021 RDAQ Annual Report details many of the key achievements of the Association despite the numerous challenges faced by many of its members over the past year.

The RDAQ Board and State Office provide advocacy, leadership, professional development, resources, competition and training opportunities as well as accreditation and administrative support to all affiliated Riding for Disabled Associations in Queensland (Member Centres). All RDAQ Member Centres and their volunteers are covered by insurance held by RDAA on behalf of its members.

RDAQ works closely with the RDAA Executive to develop policies and procedures that reflect the changing needs of its member centres, their volunteers, and the people with disability who use their services. RDAQ advises on relevant national policies and accreditation standards for rider health and safety, horse welfare, coach and volunteer training, and Centre management. RDAQ collaborates with government agencies and industry representatives to raise awareness of the work of RDAQ and to secure support for its members.

RDAQ Member Centres reach across physical, social, cultural, and economic barriers to provide opportunities for people living with disability in their communities. They range from very small centres in remote locations to large multi-service organisations in urban areas. The Member Centres are all managed by a local committee of volunteers and operate under a variety of service models. All RDAQ Member Centres and their coaches must continue to meet strict RDAA accreditation standards.

All affiliated Centres deliver unique equine-assisted services designed to build self-esteem, confidence, skills and joy in people living with disability, aged from 3 years. Those who do not wish to ride may still benefit from time spent just being with one of the RDA specially selected horses. Horses can help build trust, joy, and a sense of calm. With a horse you can live in the moment!

The benefits of RDA are not limited to the participants. The Centres have a strong history of building a sense of shared purpose and inclusiveness among carers and volunteers drawn from across all parts of the community.

Each RDAQ Centre is an independent not-for-profit incorporated association run by their own elected local  Committee of volunteers. Please contact your nearest RDAQ Member Centre to find out more about the programs and opportunities offered at that Centre.

We welcome all support in achieving our mission. Please contact our State Office on 07 3408 6942 or email us  admin@rdaq.org.au to discuss how you can play a role in the work of RDAQ.

For more information about becoming an RDAQ Sponsor please click  SPONSOR