About Peer and Family Support

“Hope, given with a personal connection, can make a big difference.” -Mike Ferriter, Chapter Co-Founder

A spinal cord injury is an unexpected, life-changing event for the individual injured, their family and their friends. The newly injured and their families must learn to accept and cope with a dramatic change and adjust to their post-injury life. The Greater Boston Chapter’s “RISE Above Paralysis” organization works to Reach, Inspire, Support and Empower those affected by this injury.

Our nationally recognized Peer Visitation Program provides positive role models to those who are newly injured, to their families and to those living in the community.

For the newly injured peers can meet with you and your families on an ongoing basis and provide emotional support and resources. Our staff and volunteers focus on the overall independence and well being of a person therefore enhancing their problem solving abilities for successful adjustment to a new injury. Peers demonstrate and discuss an array of issues more easily, as they themselves deal with those same issues every day.

For family members this injury is equally as life altering. Our family peers have been there, as they too have been impacted by this injury. They provide understanding of how this impacts your life and offer suggestions on how to cope with the sudden life changes, balancing hospital visits and commitments at home , the transition back home and establishing a new “normal.”

Back in the community there are many adjustments to life. Some happen right away and others occur months or even years later. Our peers continue to be a resource through all phases of life.

Where to Meet – Peers will meet with individuals in hospitals, rehabilitation and skilled nursing facilities, at home, or will arrange a ‘first trip’ to a restaurant, the shopping mall or an athletic event. For others, telephone support may be more appropriate. The Peer Visitor Program is tailored to the needs of each individual.

We do not, and have never, charged for our services. We rely on donations, sponsors and grants to fund our program.