Tuesday, 10 November 2015
Jonathan Fogertym writes about his motivation to become a trustee of SIA.
1) How long have you been living with an SCI?
I was injured in 1988 as a 14 year old. I dived into the shallow end of a school swimming pool and hit my head on the bottom. I thought I was invincible at that age. I had no comprehension that doing such a thing could lead to such a serious injury. Having said that, I knew immediately that I was paralysed. It was a surreal experience, to be able to see my arms and legs floating by my side but to be unable to move them. I tried to move them, of course, something inside of me refused to lie still. I believe it was an irrepressible will to live, something innate in all of us.
2) Why did you choose to become an SIA Trustee?
It was an easy decision. I wanted to give something back to the Association. My parents joined me as a member of the SIA very shortly after my injury and even as a teenager I appreciated the support I received. It was important to me to contribute and to try and help others who found themselves in a similar situation.
3) What have you gained from being a member of SIA’s Governing Council?
Primarily, a huge understanding and appreciation of the work that those involved with SIA in the years before me have done. If it wasn't for their campaigning and tenacity, SIA would not be the leading user led organisation for those with SCI that it is today. Being an SIA trustee allows you to understand how the charity raises and spends money and functions on a day-to-day basis and it allows you to play a strategic part in that process. That input is important and hugely rewarding. Being a member of the SIA building committee (that supervised the building and the move into SIA House) was particularly rewarding. It enabled SIA to move on to the next level and develop over the 10 years that we have been in Milton Keynes. On a personal note, I have developed many of my own personal skills and I have forged many life long friendships along the way.
Jonathan Fogerty, C5/6 tetraplegic
Posted by Trustees' Week at Tuesday, November 10, 2015