As a charity that supports families affected by childhood acquired brain injury, the support we provide focuses on early intervention and enables us to help reduce potential long-term difficulties associated with childhood acquired brain injury.
Through our virtual support package, we are able to offer a wide variety of services and pathways to support and utilise the breadth of interactive services on offer from the Child Brain Injury Trust. To find out more about accessing support, please speak to your local ABI Coordinator.
Goal setting and assessment of needs
Via telephone we can assess the non-clinical and non-medical support needs of the family. As part of this, we will work with the family to help prioritise family needs and goals. This includes assessing:
- Financial support needs
- Educational support needs
- Practical support needs
- Onward referral to additional services
Sometimes just chatting to someone at the end of the phone can be enough for a parent, knowing that the person they are speaking to understands what they are going through.
During an initial call, an ABI Coordinator can help to normalise what families are going through and help with some practical advice, structuring the support a family may need and making them aware of more specialist services if needed.
Additional resources that can support parents include:
Benefits advice review
This is a unique service available to Child Brain Injury Trust families without charge and delivered by specialist external welfare advisers. Advisers can review the current benefits that a family is accessing, entitlements they should be receiving, and provide tailored advice on what steps to take next. This includes making sure a family is receiving all the money they’re entitled to and guiding them through the benefits application process.
Following a referral from an ABI Coordinator, a date and time is arranged by a specialist welfare adviser with the family to chat over the phone and complete an informal benefits advice review including next steps.
With a wealth of experience in applying for funding, ABI Coordinators can work in partnership with families and other clinical and non-clinical professionals to source avenues of funding that may not ordinarily be accessible or known to others.
Funding support may include funds for household items to assist the family in their recovery, days out to help with bringing the family together in their rehabilitation journey or assisting with funding to access additional therapies outside NHS offer (under advisement from therapy teams).
Private Facebook support group
We understand that when a brain injury occurs it can feel like a family is on their own. By connecting with others who have been in the same position, families are able to connect with a network of parents and carers in a unique position, from across the UK when it’s an appropriate time in their journey.
This is a closed, private parent support group available to parents and carers supported by the Child Brain Injury Trust only. This group page is moderated by the team at the Child Brain Injury Trust and all local ABI Coordinators are linked into the group and can add parents and carers individually to the group.
Some parents share their story and journey, along with advice, hints and tips on what got them through their journey. Others join just knowing they are not alone and know where to go if they want to speak to another parent or carer.
Support for children and young people with ABI
After an ABI, young people want to understand how and why their brain injury affects them and learn about strategies to help them overcome some of the common difficulties following ABI.
What is important to know about resources for young people is that at times they can contain a lot of information, therefore we suggest that young people only read a little at a time, when it’s appropriate. It is also important to remember that although we cover more common areas of difficulty in our resources, it does not mean young people will be affected by all of them – everyone affected by ABI is different and for more specialist support we will signpost or refer into appropriate services.
Resources to support young people include:
- My Best Friend Buddy
- All about my Brain +10 / -10 years
- Caolan’s Book
- ABI Alert Cards
Support with Education
After an ABI it is important that the transition back to education is measured and timely. It is important that it is staged and reviewed at appropriate intervals with all professionals involved in a child or young person’s care.
Our team of ABI Coordinators can liaise with the education provider, hospital team and other professionals while also providing guidance around appropriate ways to integrate a young person back into education. We can help design a ‘phased return to education plan’ and give direction on how it should be measured for the most effective integration back into education.
Additional resources and support available for schools include:
- Information Pack
- The ABI Mini Guide for schools (online and hard copy)
- ‘Practical Strategies for Teachers’ Factsheet
- ‘Understanding and Managing’ e-learning series
- Virtual, interactive school awareness sessions
- CPD accredited online training programme
Where virtual conferencing facilities are available, our ABI Coordinators may also be able to feed into school meetings remotely – In advance via e-mail or virtually via conference call and contribute to the educational support plan for a child or young person.
Support for Siblings
We recognise that it can be difficult having a sibling with an acquired brain injury, so we have some resources to help siblings along the way.
We have created a sibling’s pack that includes the following:
We also have additional support that includes:
- Pre-recorded sibling e-learning session for parents to support siblings
- ‘Zero to Hero’ sibling novel for siblings
- ‘You’re not the only one’ booklet for parents and siblings
Signpost to other organisations
When we are not able to help directly, we often know of an organisation or team that can. Our ABI Coordinators have a great understanding of local networks where you can access additional support. ABI Coordinators will signpost to the most appropriate organisations and help with understanding what can at times be a minefield of information.
When a brain injury happens, we understand that whole family is affected. We understand what families are going through. We appreciate that it is really important to get independent advice from an expert legal professional who understands childhood acquired brain injury and know how to get the very best for a young person’s rehabilitation. It’s also important to speak to someone as soon as a parent or carer feels ready to have the conversation. ABI Coordinators can signpost to legal support team or provide information around where to access support and advice.
The Child Brain Injury Trust (CBIT) is committed to fully implementing the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), introduced on 25 May 2018. We therefore require consent to record and store personal data before we can provide support.
Child Brain Injury Trust
Unit 1 Great Barn
Baynards Green Farm