News

New website marks turning point

Our new website aims to improve the digital experience of people affected by spinal cord injury and connect them to services quickly and easily

Our new website launches today, heralding a new era for how we engage with the spinal cord injury community online.

People using the site can book a one-to-one session with our peer support advisers or get an appointment with a specialist nurse. They can also book a counselling slot or get an emergency care plan if they’ve recently been hospitalised with a spinal injury.

Digital and personal

This mix of digital and personalised support is the heartbeat of the new site, enabling spinally injured people and their loved ones to reserve personalised sessions in just a few clicks.

All peer support advisers live with a spinal cord injury and intimately understand the needs of their peers.

A new feature will also enable people to see which law firms, care organisations and financial support is available in their area. And a new suite of films introduce each peer support adviser, who invite you into their lives and talk about their experiences.

Our freephone advice service remains in place for those who’d prefer to get support over the phone. You can also call or email your region’s peer support adviser directly.

Our chief executive Nik Hartley says: “This is the first step on our journey towards giving the 50,000 people in the UK living with a spinal injury the support they need in the clearest and easiest way possible.

“Lockdown has seen more and more people use online tools to get support, and our new website gives them the tools they need, from the latest health advice to booking support from our network of peers and nursing staff across England and Wales.

This is the first step on our journey towards giving the 50,000 people in the UK living with a spinal injury the support they need in the clearest and easiest way possible.

Nik Hartley, our chief executive

“Our ambition is to become the single, go-to place for spinally injured people to come – and to support them practically and emotionally through our peer support, counselling services and specialist nurses. We are here for everyone living with a spinal injury – now and for life.”

Mental health

Emotional support is also prioritised, as we understand the mental health challenges that come with spinal cord injury – both immediately after and longer term. People browsing the emotional support section of the site can read about the most common issues spinal cord injured people face, and easily book a slot with our counsellor Ian Younghusband.

Body matters

Our new-look, restructured site also has a dedicated section on how spinal injury affects the body. All areas are covered, from bladder and bowel problems to skin, sex and relationships. Our aim is to reassure people who are coming to terms with issues such as these – and to lay out the facts so they can make informed choices. On each page are quick links to book in with a nurse if they have a specific concern.

Life after injury

We’ve also created a section on life with a spinal injury – covering key issues such as travelling at home and abroad, employment and accessibility. Users can find out about the benefits and support they might be entitled to, with links for extra government or charity support.

Join an event at the click of a button

Our transformed events section gives you the chance to get involved with us – laid out in a clear and interactive style. You can book a place at an event, tell us about a slot you’ve already got with a major event or reserve a slot at one of our online virtual cafes. All events can be filtered according to the type of event you prefer, from physical challenges to our spectacular fundraising balls and digital conferences.

Easier to support us

It’s now even easier to make a one-off donation, sign up for a regular gift or join our family of spinal cord injured people. And you can find out about opportunities to join our volunteering community, who remain the lifeblood of improving the lives of everyone affected by spinal injury.

Professional support

Our revamped healthcare professionals section aims to give those working in the field an overview of our online and in-person training events. As with our standard events listings, these are displayed in an easy-to-view style and can be booked much more quickly than before. As we continue our work to improve our digital offer, we will expand this part of the site to give even more support for professionals.

The work goes on

Our new site is designed to let our users show us how we can improve the digital experience. Our new analysis tools can help us identify any improvements and test new approaches. “It’s a living, breathing thing that quickly shows us how to tweak the site or make more fundamental changes to our online services,” says Paul Cottam, our digital consultant. He adds:

We’ll be looking at how people use the site, which pages might be improved or added to, and how we can make the experience a truly satisfying one for all who visit. Users will be consulted regularly to provide feedback on how the website is working for them.”

Paul Cottam, our digital communications expert