David Ross Rehabilitation Fund
David Ross was injured whilst playing Rugby for Wallace High School on 27th February 2013. The injury occurred in a ruck when another player came down awkwardly on David’s neck causing a dislocation at the level of his 6th and 7th cervical vertebrae. Following initial assessment at Altnagelvin Hospital in Londonderry, David was transferred to the Royal Victoria Hospital where he had a cervical disc removed and had anterior fusion surgery in order to stabilise his neck. This was followed by 4 weeks in ICU and HDU and eventually referral to Musgrave Park Hospital to start his long and arduous rehabilitation process. 4 months of hard work here resulted in David being discharged on 25th July 2013. David has amazed and inspired everyone with his gutsy determination to reclaim his love of life.
He has returned to school to complete his ‘A’ levels, he drives, he parties with his pals as well as training with the national Wheelchair Rugby team. In order for him to realise his full potential, he is undergoing a rehabilitation programme. Unfortunately in Northern Ireland, the follow up and support is limited for those who have suffered spinal injuries in terms of ongoing Physiotherapy.
In David’s own words:
‘In order for me to continue my rehabilitation I have had to look elsewhere for help to keep pushing myself in order to keep my body healthy and ensure I am in the best condition to aid my recovery. I travelled to Cambridge to a place called Prime Physio in December to see an expert in Physiotherapy for spinal injuries. This allowed me to see what I could achieve through some very simple exercises. From this I was able to put together a programme which I work on with a personal trainer 2-3 times a week. I hope to return to this facility every few months so my progress can be tracked and I can develop my programme based on my progress. Money donated will help to pay for the equipment I use when training, paying for the trainer and helping to fund the trips back and forward to the centre in Cambridge.
Since discharge I’ve also become heavily involved in wheelchair rugby and start regular training at the beginning of August (about 2 weeks after discharge). This has greatly improved my strength and confidence which has really helped to speed up my recovery. Also spending time with other players taught me a lot about my disability and encouraged me to become more independent. I have now been training with the Irish national side since November and hope to represent them in the European championship qualifiers in January 2014. Unfortunately wheelchair rugby is very poorly funded in Ireland and most of the funding comes from the players. The equipment is very expensive and the sport involves a lot of travel. I would also like to use some of the money to help me with the expenses of playing the sport as without it I feel my fitness, general health and ultimately my recovery would suffer’.
My name is Philip Parr and I have links to Wallace High School and David, through my role as Physio for the Senior Rugby sides at the school. David’s is a cause that I would love to make some degree of difference to through raising funds, allowing him to continue with his ongoing rehabilitation in the future. I will be taking part in the 5×50 challenge this year and have in fact already started (30/03/14). This involves walking, running or cycling 5K every day for the next 50 consecutive days. As I walk the dog every day anyway, I will aim to just either run or cycle. So far I’ve raised in the region of £800 towards David’s rehabilitation fund. I have one week of my challenge left and have so far ran/cycled 740km in the last 44 days. I’ll be finishing the challenge on Sunday 18th May with a 100km cycle. (Its not Giro standard but bear in mind I sat on a proper road bike for the first time 4 weeks ago).
It would be fantastic if we could get up to the £1000 mark and give David a significant sum of money to aid his ongoing rehabilitation. Once again I would be extremely grateful if you would click on the below link, donate and spread the word.
The Wallace High Rugby Family is one that is unfortunately familiar with tragic circumstances in recent years, none more so than the death of Nevin Spence which devastated staff, players and pupils in the school. With Nevin having been a regular visitor to the Physio room, I got to know him well and continued this friendship in his days as an Ulster Rugby player, where his hard work ethic, humility and undoubted talent saw him become a great success. Any funds raised through this challenge for David will be done so in the memory of Nevin Spence and his family through the NGN 7’s organisation.
Any donation, however little or large will be most gratefully received and you can be assured it is going towards a fantastic cause in the David Ross Rehabilitation Fund. Please click on the following link to donate: https://www.justgiving.com/yimby/DavidRossRehabilitationFund