‘When I first had my accident, I thought life was over. Spinal Injuries Ireland gave me hope’.
– Daniel Flynn, SII service user
Spinal Injuries Ireland needs your help so that people like Daniel can regain their independence.
Try to imagine living in a nursing home all day, every day, at the age of just 33. This is the plight that some individuals are faced with as a result of spinal cord injury.
In October 2012, Daniel Flynn’s life changed forever. On his way home from work, his car skidded off the road leaving him paralysed from the waist down. When Daniel left the National Rehabilitation Hospital in Dublin he suffered from subsequent medical conditions, and having no close family to support him meant that the only place he would get proper care was in a nursing home.
“It was a really dark period in my life. Not only did I have to deal with such a life changing injury, but living in a nursing home meant that I regularly had to see people that I became close with pass away. It came to a point where I felt I would not allow myself to get close to people anymore”, explains Daniel.
Spinal Injuries Ireland’s (SII) Community Team first connected with Daniel when he was in the NRH. Siobhan listened to his concerns and explained to him what would happen following treatment. She also put him in touch with his local SII Outreach Officer who would work on his behalf to gain access to local services.
Daniel also availed of SII’s peer support service, linking him in with other people with a SCI. Jen, SII’s Activities Coordinator, introduced him to new activities and arranged for him to go on outings to the cinema, football matches and on a powerboat trip in Dublin Bay.
“When I first had my accident, I thought life was over. I didn’t know what to do. But through the support of SII, I am meeting other people in the same situation and, hearing their stories, I realise that you can live a full life, get a job, and have relationships. Spinal Injuries Ireland gave me hope.”
As a result of SII’s Outreach Team, Daniel’s future is a lot brighter. After a long road campaigning on his behalf, he has successfully gained independent living and will move in to his new home in 2017.
Daniel’s story is just one of many. In Ireland, there are over 1800 people living with a spinal cord injury, 76% of whom are unemployed and 40% live on or below the poverty line. On average, one person sustains a traumatic spinal cord injury every week and it can happen to anyone at any stage. This overwhelming number means that there are so many people who would greatly benefit from your support.
Please make a donation to Spinal Injuries Ireland so that we can help people like Daniel regain their independence.