Peer Testimonial: Brooke and Ashley

Posted by Reeve Staff in Daily Dose on March 06, 2017 # Peer & Family Support Program

Two years ago, Brooke was paralyzed in a four wheeler accident and is now living with paraplegia. She has been working with a Reeve Foundation certified mentor named Ashley for over a year chatting and texting weekly. Along with Brooke’s family and friends, Ashley has been an important support to Brooke as she adjusts to living with paralysis. In addition to being her mentor, Brooke considers Ashley a friend who is always there for her—no matter how difficult things may become.

Ashley's mentorship impacts Brooke in several ways. With a young son and a very active life, Ashley is a role model and demonstrates how to thrive while living with paralysis. She encourages and helps Brooke to achieve goals, even if Brooke thinks they are too hard to reach. Ashley also shows Brooke that it is okay to be different and how to embrace it.

“Prior to having a mentor, I had a difficult time expressing my feelings to my family and friends. They could not fully understand the grief that I was feeling after my accident. Ashley, who is also living with a spinal cord injury, is able to relate to me in certain ways my family and friends just couldn’t. Ashley knows how to encourage me, which makes accepting life with paralysis and learning to move forward much easier.”

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This project was supported, in part, by grant number 90PRRC0002, from the U.S. Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C. 20201. Grantees undertaking projects under government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official Administration for Community Living policy.