Pupils of Kingsbrook View Primary Academy, Aylesbury, hosted a special disability awareness event earlier this month to support Stoke Mandeville Spinal Research (SMSR), in celebration of our 10th anniversary year.

Since the Charity launched, we have funded close to £1 million towards spinal cord injury research (SCI) with the aim of finding treatments and solutions to the major complications of spinal cord injury, including pressure ulcers, pain, urinary tract infections and upper limb function – conditions that can affect over 50,000+ individuals living with paralysis in the UK today.

SMSR Ambassador, Kat Panagaki, a C5 tetraplegic, who was involved in a car accident while on holiday in 2014, gave an inspiring talk about daily life in a wheelchair, how she faces everyday challenges, and why future research is vital in making a real difference to the SCI community so wheelchair users can continue to lead healthier, and more fulfilling lives.

Kat explained: “Since being part of the disabled community, I've seen how people treat you differently. My aim is to make people see that disability doesn't stop you from living a full, adventurous life.

Commenting on the school’s disability awareness event, SMSR Corporate & Community Fundraiser, Kate Favell, said: “It was wonderful to visit Kingsbrook View in our 10th anniversary year and to engage with all the pupils on the day. They enjoyed listening to Kat’s inspirational talk and having the opportunity to experience moving around the school in wheelchairs.

Kate added: “On behalf of everyone involved with Stoke Mandeville Spinal Research, I’d like to thank the pupils and staff for their wonderful support, and for kindly inviting us to come along and raise awareness of our important work."

Pupils are now looking forward to getting involved in fundraising for the charity with a summer mufti day.

As part of our milestone year, we are hoping to raise an additional £100,000 to kickstart the next decade of research so that we can make even more breakthroughs in the prevention and treatment of secondary complications to improve quality of life for people living with spinal cord injury.

Click here to find out how you can get involved in supporting 10 years of research.