Injury awareness presentation for Kedron State School

Published: August 6, 2009  |  Source: northside-chronicle.whereilive.com.au
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awareness-presKEDRON: Students at Kedron State School will hear important injury prevention messages to help keep them safe in the schoolyard and beyond next week.

Spinal Education Awareness Team (SEAT) presenter Robert Spencer, who has been presenting for the past 16 years, will share his story of how he sustained his spinal cord injuries and what life is like using a wheelchair with children from Prep to Year Seven on August 13.

Mr Spencer, pictured, has spoken to almost 90,000 children about the danger of risky behaviours such as diving into water before checking its depth, not wearing a seatbelt or playing sports recklessly.

“There is currently no cure for a spinal cord injury – your spinal cord has the consistency of a banana and once it’s damaged, you have to use a wheelchair for life,” he said.

“I want to share my story with as many students as possible to prevent them from having a lifelong disability.”

Spinal Injuries Association CEO Mark Henley said doctors often described a spinal cord injury as one of the worst injures you could sustain.

“The effect a spinal cord injury has on the body is colossal. Not only do newly-injured patients have to adjust to using a wheelchair, but their bladder and bowel control, body temperature, internal organs, balance, self confidence and emotional wellbeing are also affected,” Mr Henley said.

“Then there comes the obstacles of trying to return to their home or workplace, school or sporting club; or regular supermarket that may not have adequate access for wheelchairs.”

As a service of the Spinal Injuries Association, SEAT has been operating in Queensland for the past 22 years, with more than 1.2 million children viewing the program in that time.

With 14 SEAT presenters based throughout Queensland, in 2009 the team aim to speak to around 80,000 primary and secondary school students.

For more information on SEAT, visit http://www.spinal.com.au