Riffat Yaqub alongside other members of the Personal Injury Team at Hodge Jones and Allen donned some red t-shirts and spent a few hours at Euston Square underground station raising money for the Spinal Injuries Association (SIA). Armed with buckets, which we were warned not to shake, and a certain amount of festive cheers we spent the afternoon appealing to the good nature of London commuters.
I assumed that this would be a difficult task to say the least but we were all pleasantly surprised when the money flowed in. People stopped to check their pockets for change, others dug to the bottom of handbags and at least one man slipped in a £10 note! Perhaps there is something about squeezing into train with hundreds of other Londoners that engenders a more generous spirit then I realised. On a number of occasions people stopped to ask who we were collecting for and why.
The SIA provides a number of invaluable services to those with spinal cord injuries (SCI) including the provision of telephone counselling and a nurse advocate service. During what is a traumatic time in someone’s life the SIA are able to show the newly injured that life can carry on. They provide an excellent service for the spinal cord injured.
What is a Spinal Cord Injury?
A Spinal Cord Injury is any injury to the spinal cord that is caused by trauma as opposed to disease. The type of injury depends on where the spinal cord and nerve roots are damaged. It can cause paralysis to incontinence or simply just pain.
Common spinal cord injuries are cervical, injuries to the neck which often result in full or partial quadriplegia, thoracic which is when the top portion of one’s spine is injured resulting in paraplegia, and lumbar sacral injuries to the middle part of the back causing decreased control of legs and hips. There are many causes of these injuries but most are from car accidents, accidents at work, sports injuries, or violence
Anyone with a spinal cord injury will know how difficult it is to secure state funding to assist with the provision of many services that a spinal cord injured patient requires. My work often involves obtaining compensation which can be used to fund rehabilitation and purchasing specialist equipment for my clients to help optimise their independence and provide so far as possible a good quality of life.
SIA do a great job and it was a privilege for me to get out there in the London streets and fund-raise for a great cause.