When Melton Golf Club decided to support the only local charity which supports brain injury survivors and their families, the men’s captain had a special reason for backing the organisation.
John Harvey has seen at first hand how important Headway Leicestershire, Leicester and Rutland is to those affected after his brother collapsed last year.
The organisation offers a unique service to those recovering from an acquired brain injury (ABI) and their loved one as they come to terms with what is often a traumatic experience.
Mr Harvey, who announced the club’s nomination of Headway as their annual charity for this year at a drive-in event on Sunday with lady captain, Jackie Fisher, said: “In October last year when we needed to decide which charity to support, my brother was suddenly taken ill with encephalitis – which is an inflammation of the brain.
“He was found unconscious on the floor.
“Although he was made a recovery and is back at home, he has been left with a brain injury and may not fully recover to return to work.
“He has had great care from the NHS but it’s likely to need further help in the future and Headway with its groups and branches across the UK is the organisation to get help and support.”
The charity supports adults who have acquired or sustained a traumatic brain injury either through support at it’s day centre or via outreach.
Headway currently gives support to a handful of brain injury survivors across Melton with outreach worker Dawn Gray helping affected individuals with accessing and applying for the correct benefits as well as general advice.
She liaises with other professionals on a client’s behalf as well as offering support at key meetings with social services and hospital appointments if needed.
Ruth Johnson, fundraiser and events officer for the local Headway branch, and who attended the drive-in event, said: “We are delighted Melton Golf Club has chosen to support us this year as 2020 is a very special year for Headway as we celebrate our 30th Anniversary.
“Our aim during this milestone year is to raise the awareness around brain injury across the areas our members live.
“Every 90 seconds someone is admitted to hospital after an acquired brain injury, so the chances are many of us will know someone affected, perhaps by a stroke, brain tumour or heart attack.”
The most common forms of ABI are traumatic brain injury and stroke but other causes include brain tumour, meningitis, aneurysm, haemorrhage, encephalitis, anoxia, and other conditions.
Support from the local branch of the charity, which has a dedicated team of 10 part-time staff, often begins while individuals are in hospital at the Brain Injury Unit and the Neurological Rehabilitation Unit at the Leicester General Hospital where their outreach workers have a regular and important presence.
Anyone from the Melton area who needs advice following a brain injury either for themselves or a loved one can self-refer by calling 0116 2733212.