editor's note: The riding and driving for the disables in America is greatly in need of not only the full support of our national federations but from the equestrian community as well. The Germans and British excell in the international arena because of the support in horses and finances they get. Let's get on board in the USA as we are hosting the first ever Para Equestrian Games at the 2010 WEG. MPH
The visitors of this year’s World Equestrian Festival, CHIO Aachen have collected 15,000 Euros for the benefit of therapeutic riding and the sports for the disabled. In the course of the “Night of the Stars 2008” – a charity event of the paralympic sport in the Mercedes-World in Berlin – Klaus Pavel, President of the Aachen-Laurensberger Rennverein (ALRV), handed over the cheque to Gerda Pleitgen, who is Chairwoman of the Sports Association for the Disabled. Pleitgen was enthused about the “great commitment of the CHIO Aachen and the horse sport fans”. Also dressage riders Bettina Eistel and Angelika Trabert were glad about the big donation. They had won the Team Silver medal at the Paralympic Games 2008 in Hongkong together and were being honoured for their success in Berlin in the presence of German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
For many years now, the joint charity campaign"Moments of Luck" of the ALRV, the Sports Association for the Disabled and the German Curatorship for Therapeutic Riding (DKthR) has called attention to the hardships of handicapped people and has collected money for the good cause in the course of the CHIO Aachen. By that, tens of thousand Euros as well as further 80,000 Euros in the course of the FEI World Equestrian Games Aachen 2006 have been collected in the past. “And we are proud”, explained Klaus Pavel, “that we could establish a new donation record in 2008, there has been a revenue increase of 50 per cent. This success shows us that we are on the right path, and it will give us additional motivation.” It is the financial aid that is needed urgently especially in the field of therapeutic riding. This form of therapy uses the alleviative, curative and preventive effect of the horse’s presence and performance on the handicapped patient: In the case of motor activity or perception problems, communication and contact difficulties, depressions or a physical or mental disability.