This is an article from Unfold newsletter.
When Gail was 48, something happened that suddenly changed her life. She needed support more than ever before. And she found it on our online community – all thanks to you.
Suddenly everything changed
You could hardly meet a more gregarious person than Gail. She’s always up for a chat, and always up for an adventure. From riding motorbikes to going skydiving, Gail has done it all.
When she was 48, she was diagnosed with a degenerative condition. Suddenly she needed to adapt to being disabled. The condition causes her constant pain, and makes it hard for her to move around.
There have been emotional challenges too. “Because I became disabled late in life,”
she says, “it was difficult to accept. I couldn’t do the things I used to do, and I missed
the person I used to be”.
“What does your support mean to me? Not being alone. Knowing that people care.” Gail
Only you were there
Like many disabled people, Gail found herself getting excluded and sidelined. “It was hard to deal with people’s attitudes, the glaring stares and shaking heads. I reached a low point. I didn’t want pity, I just wanted understanding.”
This lack of understanding was all too clear when Gail had her benefits reduced. Looking for help, she came across Scope’s online community. It’s a place for people connected by disability to find support, share experiences and offer advice.
Gail explained her situation and members of the community soon replied. They reassured her that other people had been in the same situation, and they advised how she could appeal the decision to reduce her benefits – which she has now done successfully.
“It was such an eye opener to realise that there are all these people who care.” Gail
Any question, any time
“I felt accepted into the online community straightaway,” says Gail. “I had people saying ‘I get it’ and ‘I’ve been there’ and ‘I care’.” When someone feels so isolated and excluded, like Gail, you can appreciate how much those warm words mean. Today, all thanks to you, Gail always has someone to turn to. “When I’m having a bad day, people on the online community understand what I’m going through. We’re all there for each other. We’re not alone.”
Giving feels good
“Without Scope’s online community,” she says, “I would have sunk without trace. But now I have hope for the future.” For Gail, that hope comes not just from receiving support, but giving support too. “I genuinely care about the people on the online community. Now I’m always posting comments and answering questions. It’s a really good feeling, to know you’ve touched someone’s life.”
You should also have that good feeling, because you’re helping fund our online
community. Thank you so much for enabling disabled people like Gail to feel they’re
“Our online community is accessible to everyone, anywhere, at any time. And every day, we see how you’re genuinely changing people’s lives. We’re so grateful for your support.”
Alex, Online Community Manager
Half of disabled people say they feel excluded from society. With so many disabled people feeling excluded, it’s crucial to have a place where they are accepted, valued and understood. You’re providing that place, through our online community.
And with your help, we can expand our reach even further and welcome even more people into this supportive, inclusive network. Thank you so much.