Child's name: Scott
Support Coordinator's name: Jennifer
Location: Glasgow and the West of Scotland
Scott’s family, from Glasgow and the West of Scotland, were visiting relatives in Northern Ireland over Easter when Scott woke in the middle of the night with a piercing cry. Six-year-old Scott was rushed to Accident and Emergency at the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children.
After tests, Scott’s family were informed that he had had a stroke. He then spent a number of days in the Intensive Care Unit. While at the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children, Scott’s family met the Child Brain Injury Trust’s ABI Coordinator for Northern Ireland who offered initial emotional support while the family were living in the hospital. Our Northern Ireland Coordinator was then able to pass the family’s details along to her colleague from Glasgow and the West of Scotland who stepped in to offer support once the family had transferred back to the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow.
Scott was experiencing challenges with his mobility which was impacting on daily tasks. The family were looking ahead to being discharged; however, Scott’s Mum felt unsure regarding Scott’s transition home and onwards to school, and how the transition to community OT and physiotherapy would go. Our ABI Coordinator was able to offer reassurance and answer questions regarding this and provide Mum with information resources to help explain ABI and common challenges to the whole family. The family were able to connect with others with shared experiences via our Facebook Parent’s and Carers group. In addition to this, our ABI coordinator agreed to liaise with school and the hospital team to help plan Scott’s transition back to school.
After approaching Scott’s school, our ABI Coordinator was able to coordinate a school meeting with input from Scott’s family and from a Nurse Specialist from the Royal Hospital for Children. This meeting was a helpful opportunity to explain to staff at school the circumstances regarding Scott’s injury, how it was currently impacting him, how it may affect him going forward and what strategies may help Scott transition back into education.
As our ABI Coordinators are not medical professionals, joint working with the Nurse Specialist allowed for any medical questions or concerns expressed by the school to be addressed. We were able to outline a clear plan for Scott’s phased return to school, begin the process of drawing together a document to record Scott’s support needs, provide important information regarding ABI, offer to deliver a staff awareness session and arrange a follow-up meeting.
The next review meeting fell in the weeks before the Summer holidays. While Scott had been doing very well to transition back to school part-time, Mum had noticed that Scott was struggling with his emotions, feeling easily frustrated, and overwhelmed by noise and loud groups. Scott’s family also noted that he was struggling with fatigue, planning and concentration. This meeting was an opportunity to review how Scott had been managing so far, discuss any concerns and devise a plan to cope with the long Summer holiday and transitioning back into the next full academic year. Strategies to support these challenges were discussed and a staff awareness session was arranged.
Over the Summer holidays Scott and his family attended our Summer Party at Almond Valley Heritage Centre where they got to meet others with shared experiences while having lots of fun. Over Summer we were also able to refer the family for further support regarding applying for DLA. At the family’s request, we were able to signpost to counselling organisations and therapy services to support Scott to process his experience and his challenges.
Our ABI Coordinator recently delivered a staff awareness session to Scott’s school ahead of his return after the Summer holidays, highlighting his current challenges and how these can be supported in school. Feedback from staff indicated that they found this session very helpful and informative. In the future we hope to deliver an awareness session to Scott’s peers.
The ABI Coordinator is in regular contact with Scott’s family and school and continues to support them on their ABI journey.