Inspirational physio student wins Welsh Woman of the Year award

A CSP member who is a motivational speaker, a model and a burns survivor has received the Welsh Woman of the Year award.

Catrin Pugh with her award

Catrin Pugh took home the top prize at the inaugural Welsh Women’s Awards 2019, held at the Exchange Hotel in Cardiff on 3 April.

In 2013, Ms Pugh experienced severe burns, covering 96 per cent of her body, after a coach she was travelling on crashed and burst into flames.

Following eight months in hospital, and many years of rehabilitation, Ms Pugh felt inspired by the treatment she received and decided to pursue a career in healthcare.

She is now studying as a first-year physiotherapy student at Kings College London and hopes the skills she gains will help her to improve the lives of other people who have experienced trauma.

Ms Pugh told Frontline: ‘I began my studies in September 2018 after five years of rehabilitation and an amazing experience with healthcare professionals.

Physio student Catrin Pugh during her rehabilitation

‘Before my injury, I had no direction in life and wasn’t sure what career path to take. The work of every member of the healthcare team, but in particular the physiotherapists, inspired my new goals and my desire to study physiotherapy myself.

‘I want to help change and improve somebody’s life the way my own was. After sustaining 96 per cent burns, I thought physiotherapy was out of reach for me.

'But with amazing support and help from the physiotherapy team at King’s, I am working towards achieving my goal of making a difference in healthcare whilst still telling my story to inspire others.’

Alongside her physiotherapy studies, Ms Pugh is also acting as an ambassador for various charities, including the British Association of Skin Camouflage, Changing Faces and the Katie Piper Foundation.

And she has recently become the face of a new beauty campaign by Avon Cosmetics titled Stand4Her, which focuses on the misrepresentation of beauty in media.

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