Asking for help is not an idea that comes naturally to Norman Meechan. A Scottish firefighter who spent 31 years with the service, he had always thought he could manage by himself without having to trouble anyone. But when his wife, Shonah, had a stroke and he later developed Parkinson’s Disease, it took him having a nervous breakdown before he realised how important it is to let others help you.
For someone who has spent 16 years struggling with poor mental health, former County Durham firefighter Dave Henderson couldn't imagine ever feeling better. But being invited for a week at Jubilee House opened his eyes to what life could be like if he started to think a little more positively.
When Waddeston Watch Commander Mark Richards was hit by a drunk driver while driving his motorcycle in 2016, his life was changed forever. Now, two years after the incident, his future as a firefighter remains unclear. But he is grateful for the progress he is making, thanks to his time with The Fire Fighters Charity.
As the Health, Fitness and Wellbeing Advisor for Staffordshire Fire and Rescue, Fiona Prew is no stranger to signposting people to the Charity to help them with their recovery. But when hit by a car while riding her bicycle and left with potentially life-changing injuries, she admits it took her longer than it ought to have done for her to consider asking for help herself.
Realising recovery from surgery couldn't be an overnight fix was the biggest lesson Sheffield Crew Manager Paul Holbrook took away from his time with The Fire Fighters Charity. That and how much he appreciated having his family around him to cheer him on.