You never know what financial event life will throw at you next. On the one hand, a man buying a scratchcard has no idea that he is about to become a jackpot winner. On the other, an off-duty police officer riding a motorcycle has no idea that she is about to lose her ability to work until the moment she crashes.
This was the exact experience of Nikki Thornley, a police officer who became a full-time wheelchair user during what should have been a carefree fortnight travelling around Europe with her husband. Nikki lost both her ability to walk and work as a police officer when she lost control of a motorcycle. She had to spend 11 months in a spinal unit in Glasgow before she could even return home.
Nikki had no income protection in place, and her family could have ended up in severe financial straits without the help of a charity-led campaign called Seven Families. The Seven Families campaign offered a tax-free income to Nikki and several other families who lost the ability to do their jobs, due to illness or disability, to highlight the importance of protecting yourself against this kind of financial risk.
In Nikki’s own words, “The finance that Seven Families is providing is making a big difference to me, because it means that I don’t have to rush back to work. It means that I can take the time I need with my rehab, so I can make sure that I’m the best I can possibly be.”
Support from loved ones is hugely important, but love alone is not enough. It is perhaps surprising how many people do not even consider protecting their income, and who live their lives with such risk hanging over their heads.
Whilst there are charities out there who can provide support to victims of serious accidents or illnesses, not everyone can rely on one to provide for them if they unexpectedly find themselves unable to work.
Watch Nikki’s inspiring story below.
If you would like to see more from the campaign, watch stories of several other families who benefited from the Seven Families.