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Young woman organizes Truro’s first PTSD Awareness Day

Kayla Fancy and Jim Flemming are ready for the area’s first PTSD Awareness Day, which will be held in Truro on Saturday.
Kayla Fancy and Jim Flemming are ready for the area’s first PTSD Awareness Day, which will be held in Truro on Saturday.

TRURO, N.S. – Although she’s been struggling with PTSD for several years, Kayla Fancy is active in many areas of her community, including serving as a volunteer with the Cobequid District Fire Brigade.

In order to educate more people about PTSD she partnered with the Truro Police Service to organize an awareness day and walk, to take place on June 24.

“I believe it’s one of those things not talked about enough,” she said. “If people talk about it more it can help those with PTSD and help the public understand more.”

Fancy experienced PTSD after she was seriously injured in a car accident in 2008. When the car she was a passenger in was hit side-on her injuries included a dislocated shoulder, broken collarbone and whiplash.

For a while she would panic about being in a vehicle and was having nightmares most nights. She would wince and become tense when things came toward her. She didn’t understand she had PTSD until a couple of years later, and was only officially diagnosed about a year ago.

“I reached out to others to see what their mechanisms for coping are, I see a counsellor at university (Mount Saint Vincent, where she’s enrolled in child and youth studies) and I have supportive people around me,” she said. “I’m more cautious now, and more anxious and high-strung than before. PTSD doesn’t affect me every day but it does affect some of the things I do.”

About a year ago she surprised many people by joining the Cobequid District Fire Brigade. She said a couple of calls have triggered her PTSD but it’s been manageable.

When she approached Truro Police about partnering on the evening they felt it was a good fit.

“PTSD is something a lot of police officers experience,” said Deputy Chief Jim Flemming. “I was diagnosed with PTSD myself and it was rough for a few years. We’re happy we’ve been able to help facilitate this.”

PTSD Awareness

Friday evening:  Kevin Davison concert at the Cobequid District Fire Hall from 7:30 p.m.-1:30 a.m. – Tickets $20 at First Choice Hair Cutters

Saturday: Walk at noon – from the Truro Police Station to the end of Prince Street, up Walker to Esplanade, to Young, to Prince Street and back to the Civic Square.

Also beginning at noon, at the Civic Square there will be bouncy houses, face painting, guest speakers, vendors and a barbecue.

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