Rebekah Allely is a burn occupational therapist who has worked in the burn field for over 29 years. She has personally witnessed the challenges of recovery experienced by burn-injured firefighters. "Initially, the injured firefighter in the hospital receives a lot of support from family, friends, and heavy support from the firefighter community,"she says. "And as healthcare professionals, we help them with the physical recovery." Then Rebekah thoughtfully explains how the most challenging component of recovery is often the return home, as the burn survivor firefighter struggles with a180 degree role reversal; rather than being in control and saving others, they are the one that is injured and needs help. The emotional toll of the burn injury can be overwhelming.
Rebekah strongly recommends Phoenix SOAR peer support to help with the emotional impact of a burn injury. "Peer support gives the burn survivor hope in a way that none of us (medical professionals) can provide. Just talking with a peer supporter and hearing the stories from someone whose "been there" can be very healing. We want firefighter burn survivors to know that it is very common to have struggles in their journey of recovery. It is OK to ask for help. You are not alone."