Ryan Jacobs

“The AFC lifted my burden”

– Ryan Jacobs
Circus/Stunt Performer, Actor

Being a part of a competitive industry such as ours, we are constantly being asked to push our boundaries; to challenge ourselves both mentally and physically. Inevitably, this pursuit takes its toll on our bodies and can quite easily lead to injury. This is the time where we are challenged mentally. The time where we need to ask for help, as difficult as this may be to do.

As a circus/stunt performer, I spend a great deal of time training to keep my body in the proper condition to be competitive. The truth is that injuries do not always happen “on the clock.” I was out training one afternoon, when I took a fall that left my ankle completely shattered. It took three pins to reconstruct the joint and I was told that I would never be able to regain full mobility in my ankle.

Being 26 years old and someone who relied heavily on my physical capabilities to obtain work, this news left me feeling completely deflated both mentally and, of course, financially. I was denied help from a number of different sources and felt isolated and completely destroyed. When I applied to the AFC, I was not only assured that I would be given the support I needed to get through my time of need, but also given the opportunity to connect with someone who understood what I was going through. Once the financial burden was lifted off my shoulders, I found that I was able to focus on my recovery and plan towards the future.

After a year of intense physiotherapy and rigorous rehabilitation, I not only regained my mobility but was able to get myself back to work and recover from what I look back on now as a small hurdle in my career. I honestly cannot thank The AFC enough for all of the support and relief that was provided to me during my time of need.