Every day another Australian is told that they are paralysed and may never walk again…at the Big Day Off, we’re working to change that.
The Big Day Off (BDO) was created by a group of businesspeople in Albury who wanted to support Australians with spinal cord injury (SCI) following the injury of a local young man, James McQuillan. James sustained quadriplegia during an AFL game in 2013.
SCI can have a devastating and often overwhelming effect on the person injured, as well as on their family and friends. SCI inhibits the movement of someone’s legs and arms, meaning most people can’t walk and need to use a wheelchair. SCI also affects bladder and bowel control, sexual function, and in some cases people need the assistance of a ventilator to breath. Over 15,000 Australians are currently living with this disability.
On top of the physical and emotional hurdles people with SCI must overcome, there is a huge financial impact on a person’s life. Over a lifetime, having an SCI costs between $5 million and $9.5 million dollars, and around 40% of that cost is covered by the individual.
This is where the Big Day Off comes in – this fun and unique initiative is raising much needed funds for two of Australia’s biggest and best spinal-based not-for-profits. Spinal Cord Injuries Australia, provides people with SCI with services, resources and support throughout their lives, while SpinalCure Australia, funds medical research to find a cure for SCI. The Big Day Off Trust also reserves a percentage of proceeds to support community-based spinal charities . In this way, we’re able to support what we call the 3Ds of spinal cord injury – the day-to-day (support, services, health, employment, adaptive needs), and the dream (the cure).
The Big Day Off is a fun and unique way for businesses and staff to fundraise for this important cause and getting involved is really simple. Businesses register online and offer a day or days paid off and staff can then buy tickets in the draw to win them. It all takes place online and 100% of the proceeds go to Australian spinal cord injury support services and research.