“When I first started at Ride High I found the people more intimidating than the horses”
Cameron was referred to Ride High by the central PEC in Milton Keynes when he was 14 years old. He had very low confidence and struggled to speak to anyone. The school were concerned about his future, especially in terms of finding employment.
Rachel Medill, founder of Ride High, worked with Cameron when he first arrived at Ride High: “He wouldn’t pick up a pencil. He wouldn’t look anyone in the eye and refused to take part in activities. His first response to everything was ‘no’”.
Cameron remembers, “When I first started at Ride High I found the people more intimidating than the horses.
“I remember arriving at my Ride High session feeling bad a lot, but I always left in a good mood. Just being around the horses made me feel so much better. My favourite horse is Quincy. I absolutely love him. He’s a Norwegian Fjord pony so he’s got a really cool mane. He’s small and cute and never naughty.
“I managed to talk to the clubleader a little bit, and eventually I started to feel better around the other children in my group. My biggest challenge was the trip to Badminton Horse Trials. There were so many people there, such big crowds of strangers, but I really enjoyed it.”
Rachel remembers, “As we walked around the stalls and displays at Badminton he started to speak to the stallholders. He was asking questions of strangers and I couldn’t quite believe it! It was a massive step forward for him”.
In summer 2014 Cameron finished his course in Animal Care, Levels 1 & 2, at Moulton College: “We had to present Power Point presentations in front of the whole class. It was terrifying but I managed it. I wouldn’t have been able to do it without Ride High because we did lots of activities where we had to talk in front of other people and work in teams.”
Cameron (now 18 years old) volunteers at a local animal rescue centre and is looking for paid employment where he can express his love of animals and care for those in need.
“Because of Ride High I am more confident at talking to new people and am able to be myself around them. Without Ride High I don’t think I would ever have gone to college and made new friends. I’m still in touch with some of them today. My life has changed so much because of Ride High.”