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For our members, the period after returning from hospital is utterly bewildering. They’ve often woken from a coma to discover that everything has changed; their bodies do not function as they used to, they have large gaps in their memories, they may not be able to do something as ordinary as make a cup of tea for themselves. As time progresses, they discover more ‘can’ts’ and realise that life will never be the same again.

Our Cognitive Modules are based on a programme designed by Kit Malia – the leading expert in rehabilitation after brain injury. We start by educating our members about what has happened to them in the Understanding Brain Injury module. We discuss different types of acquired brain injury caused by stroke, brain haemorrhage, meningitis, encephalitis, head injury or brain tumour and the common experiences people have after they have survived the crisis period.

The main issues are categorised into four sections:

Cognitive – attention, memory, information processing

Executive – planning, organising, problem solving

Physical – muscle weakness, balance, sight issues, pain

Psycho-social – emotional lability, confidence, anxiety and depression

Everyone with an acquired brain injury will experience issues in one or more of these areas.

In our modules we create a safe, friendly and upbeat environment for survivors to meet other people with similar experiences and work out strategies to cope with their difficulties. The group then becomes a strong and valuable support structure.