Paralysed Cork teenager thanks people for their support
Girl paralysed from waist down after falling from a rooftop during night out in Kinsale
Ciara O’Brien was injured when she fell from a roof in Kinsale, Co Cork. Image via Ciara O’Brien Trust Fund / Facebook
A teenager who was paralysed from the waist down after falling from a rooftop has thanked those who fundraised to help her family convert their home to make it suitable for her.
Ciara O’Brien (18) from Kinsale, Co Cork had just completed her Leaving Certificate and was attending her debs at Kinsale Community School when she was injured in August.
She fell from a flat roof at the Moorings Nightclub complex in Kinsale where she was attending a party.
Ms O’Brien fell over eight feet on to a concrete surface and suffered serious spinal cord injuries which paralysed her from the waist down.
She has been attending the National Rehabilitation Institute in Dún Laoghaire since October for physiotherapy and counselling for her injuries, but hopes to return home this month.
Locals and friends of the family have been fundraising to help adapt her home.
“We have had loads of fundraising by my community and people have been absolutely amazing – they are fundraising to buy equipment for me as well as to adapt the house because everything is out of reach,” Ms O’Brien told The Neil Prendeville Show on Cork’s Red FM.
She said receiving treatment at Dún Laoghaire has given her perspective on her life-changing injury.
“At the moment, my injury is permanent. It could change over time .... [but] what I have regained now is what they expected me to regain. After that, you never know, everyone recovers differently with a back injury. It’s a long-term process of recovery,” she said.
“In Dún Laoghaire you are surrounded by people with all sorts of injuries - it’s really an eye-opener.
“ I’m kind of grateful for what happened to me because there are some people there who are so much worse off (than me).
“You have people with high spinal injuries and they are completely immobile, they can’t do anything for themselves.
“When you see people in a worse condition than you, you think: ‘Thank God - it could have been a lot worse’.”
The Ciara O’Brien Trust Fund is holding a fundraising event at the White Lady in Kinsale at 8pm on Thursday next week, January 14th.
It is also organising a 5km Fun Walk at Garrylucas Beach in Kinsale on Sunday, February 14th, at noon.