(Opening photo by © Dan Kennedy)

    Katie Piper was a normal girl living in a normal town in Hampshire when suddenly, one day in 2008, her life changed forever. Her ex-boyfriend, Danny Lynch, orchestrated an attack in which sulphuric acid was thrown at her face and almost killed her.

    Although Katie survived, the severity of the burns meant she had to be placed into an induced coma for 12 days and undergo more than 250 operations to restore her face and vision. For the aspiring young model and actress, the world as she knew it had come to an end.

    However, thanks to her courage and determination and the love of her family, Katie overcame all the obstacles in her path and today, 11 years after that heinous attack, she is a leading campaigner for burns victims and mental health awareness, has a successful media career, is the author of nine books and the proud mother of two beautiful girls.

    Just a few days after her 36th birthday, Katie was interviewed by our Editor Julia Pasarón. She spoke about her inspirational journey, the dangers of social media and how she believes in living in the present.

    I-M: In 2009, you founded the Katie Piper Foundation for people affected by burns and desfigurement, of which Simon Cowell and the surgeon that treated you through your recovery, Dr Mohammad Ali Jawad, are patrons. What have been the main achievements of the Foundation so far?

    K.P: We’ve gone through so many stages of growth over the past decade. One of our initial objectives was to set up a rehabilitation centre for burns survivors in the UK. We’re so proud that we have achieved our goal, with the Katie Piper Foundation Rehabilitation Centre opening earlier this year.

    We have patients staying there and being treated, which is just amazing. Having walked that journey myself, I felt strongly about what was needed in the UK, and I wanted to help people in a similar position. I’ve met so many doctors and fundraisers along the way who also felt the same, and we have built a team that really believes in our patients. It’s wonderful.

    I-M: How is the foundation evolving towards the future?

    K.P: It was such a big milestone to open the rehabilitation centre, but we haven’t stopped there – we are continuing to fundraise to ensure that the dream stays alive and we carry on supporting burns survivors across the UK.

    Katie Piper with two members of staff at the new Rehabilitation Centre- Fairfield Indepedent Hospital. Photo: © Justin Goff.

    I think it’s important for people to be able to discuss openly both the good and the bad, and the world has become more accepting of that in recent years.

     

    I-M: Most of your career on TV has been focused on very hard issues related in one way or another to physical disfigurement. Do you think that your personal experi- ence gives you a special angle with which to approach these matters?

    K.P: I think it can give you a certain level of understanding, but everyone’s experiences are totally unique, so you can never fully put yourself in someone else’s shoes. I also feel it’s important to stay factual and not just project your own emotions, which can skew the viewer’s opinion – I want to be informative and allow people to form their own opinions.

    I-M: What are the current TV projects in which you are involved?

    K.P: I am always filming on new projects, but as is the nature with a lot my work, I cannot let you in on them just yet!

    I-M: We strongly support gender equality at I-M. Media in general are getting better. However, there is still room for improvement. How do you think equality could be encouraged across the board?

    K.P: I think it starts with the younger generation, so more people are educated and empowered by knowing that there are opportunities out there for them if they can work.

    I also think it’s amazing that nowadays there are such strong role models for young girls to look up to. Just look at the likes of Holly Willoughby and Emma Willis – if I can be even a small part of that, then I’m grateful.

    I-M: You have written nine books so far, most of them self-help volumes. Is writing a cathartic experience for you?

    K.P: I guess I’m quite old-fashioned in this digital age, and I just love the simplicity of putting pen to paper. For me, writing can almost be a type of therapy – I find getting my thoughts and feelings out of my head and on to a page can help me rationalise any negativity and keep me focused. My most recent book is Confidence: The Journal, which was released earlier this year. I am a huge fan of journaling and find being able to reflect on my day a useful tool.

    To read this interview in full, please order your copy of our new issue now
    • Show Comments

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    comment *

    • name *

    • email *

    • website *

    Ads

    ads

    You May Also Like

    Harmony in the Oceans, a

    by Cristiana Longarini, VSY Director VSY’s declaration of sustainability states: Our corporate governance finds ...

    by Cristiana Longarini, VSY Director VSY’s declaration of sustainability states: Our corporate governance finds its expression in business ethics based …

    Space Junk Odyssey

    The Privateer mission was bound to happen, it was only a matter of time. ...

    The Privateer mission was bound to happen, it was only a matter of time. Founded in 2021 by ex-NASA and …

    The Future of Supercar Auctions

    The High-end car auction business is booming, but it can prove a minefield if ...

    The High-end car auction business is booming, but it can prove a minefield if you haven’t got the proper guidance. …

    Gerry McGovern

    Chief Design Officer, Land Rover The business of design, the game changer   Very ...

    Chief Design Officer, Land Rover The business of design, the game changer   Very few names in the world of …

    Cindy Chao

    With a notorious sculptor for a father and a much-celebrated architect grandfather, it is ...

    With a notorious sculptor for a father and a much-celebrated architect grandfather, it is not difficult to see how this …

    Leadership And Resilience In Turbulent

    Ian Wilkins speaks to Wasps Rugby Union legend and Cognacity co-founder Dr. Phillip Hopley, ...

    Ian Wilkins speaks to Wasps Rugby Union legend and Cognacity co-founder Dr. Phillip Hopley, about how today’s current business climate …

    Investing in Pink Diamonds

    In these uncertain times, investors are looking for safe havens for their money and ...

    In these uncertain times, investors are looking for safe havens for their money and diamonds might be a good place …

    Brexit as an Opportunity

    Now that article 50 has been triggered, there is a lot of speculation about ...

    Now that article 50 has been triggered, there is a lot of speculation about the disasters looming over Britain. However, …

    Blancpain once again participates in

    For the fourth consecutive year, Blancpain is participating in the “A 4 Manos” gastronomy ...

    For the fourth consecutive year, Blancpain is participating in the “A 4 Manos” gastronomy event, which sees the world’s most …

    This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you accept our use of cookies.