Triumph: Paralyzed & Hopeless to Hopeful & Free by Freddy Martin

Andrew Skinner December 23, 2017 News, Noteworthy

We'd like to take the time to THANK every single person that helped make our 10th year of Christmas Outreach a great success.

One volunteer in particular always makes a wonderful impact on the events he attends, Freddy Martin; Andrew met Freddy in the hospital while his father was recovering from an unfortunate auto accident. While Freddy's father has made a hopeful recovery, he has continued to stay involved with Triumph Foundation.

Not only is Freddy a wonderful friend and volunteer for Triumph; he has a noteworthy storytelling and traveling blog. See below for the great blog he wrote while volunteering during our Christmas Outreach this year.

Triumph: Paralyzed & Hopeless to Hopeful & Free by Freddy Martin

"At the time of this writing, Andrew and his team of Ambassadors and volunteers are in the midst of a two-week blitz visiting nearly every hospital and physical rehabilitation center in Southern California. They invite all the patients to come celebrate Christmas together and participate in a brief support group session. I went along again this year to see Triumph Foundation’s impact firsthand.

“Christmas is very special for me,” Andrew told a group of patients at Rancho Los Amigos National Rehab Center. “I spent my first Christmas after my injury in the hospital, and I know how lonely it can be. And that’s why we’re here—to show you you’re not alone, and you do have a bright future ahead.”

The room was a full house of people at various levels of recovery. There was a woman in her sixties who had fallen at home and was just getting used to working her robotic chair. There was a young man who had been in an auto accident who was just cleared to walk short distances using his cane.

One older woman, a recent immigrant from El Salvador, had a look of despair and terror on her face. She is paralyzed, in a country she doesn’t know, with nowhere to go when she is discharged, and no family to visit her.

Perhaps the most difficult to see was the two injured children (both under 10) strapped into robotic wheelchairs. Amazingly, the spirit of youthfulness and joy was still apparent on their faces as they tried their best to do what they could on their own.

Of course, a Christmas party isn’t complete without gifts, so Andrew and his Ambassadors passed out stockings, treats, and “Care Baskets” full of gifts and resources to help them move forward and triumph over their obstacles.

Andrew wrapped up the visit with an encouragement that hit home for everyone in the room, paralyzed and able-bodied alike. “I like to say that paralysis is a club nobody wants to join, but once you’re in, you’re family.”

Read Freddy's entire article on his blog here: Triumph: Paralyzed & Hopeless to Hopeful & Free


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