My chosen charity for our 12 Days of Giving 2020 is Aspire, a charity that supports people who have suffered a spinal injury. Such an injury can devastate the lives of those injured, also affecting their family and friends, and Aspire offers amazing support. It is a charity close to my family’s heart as my sister Katherine was left paralysed after a horse-riding accident and over the years Aspire have given her grants towards her wheelchairs.

The charity was founded in 1983, initially to improve the rehabilitation facilities at the London Spinal unit in the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital in Stanmore. Since then its remit has widened to give support to enable people to live their lives as fully as they can.

As a family we have raised funds for Aspire over the years, including my amazing sister Caroline undertaking an epic two week cycling adventure from the Hook of Holland to Bergen in Norway along the North Sea Cycle Route! This was to raise funds towards a specialised lightweight wheelchair for Katherine and Aspire kindly funded the difference.

This wheelchair made a huge difference to Katherine who was struggling with her old, heavier chair when she wanted to get in her car and just generally get out and about, so it has enabled her to maintain her independence without having to rely on her husband and daughter to always be around to help.
Aspire has helped to make a huge difference to Katherine’s life so any opportunity that we can take to support them is always wonderful.

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