2017 COMMUNITY BRAIN INJURY ASSOCIATION OF THE YEAR NOMINEE

Brain Injury Association of Peel & Halton (BIAPH)
biaph
Brain Injury Association of Peel & Halton (BIAPH)

Nominated For: COMMUNITY BRAIN INJURY ASSOCIATION OF THE YEAR

The Brain Injury Association of Peel and Halton – BIAPH was pleased to learn that we had been selected as a nominee for an Award of Excellence in Brain Injury Rehabilitation in the Community Brain Injury Association of the Year category.

BIAPH became a registered charity on May 01, 1986. Since its inception BIAPH has been providing support to brain injured survivors and their caregivers living in the regions Peel and Halton.

BIAPH conducts monthly support groups throughout Peel and Halton. These groups offer a safe place to connect, share experiences and support each other. Our groups also offer a caregiver component where the many tireless and dedicated caregivers can connect and support each other. At some of our support group meetings we draw on our community for guest speakers on a regular basis who give presentation on a variety of topics that have been identified by the group. In addition, BIAPH organizes social events throughout the year as well as specialized programs such as peer support and caregiver relief.

This past year BIAPH created a new and unique support group called Headspin. Over the years we had survivors in their late teens and twenties attending support groups, many times accompanied by a parent. Based on feedback from these “younger” survivors we came to realize that what this demographic was lacking was a social activity based place to connect. Typically, this group is dealing with social isolations as their friends “move on” with their lives, pursuing post-secondary education and careers. BIAPH applied for and obtained funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation to implement this new program for this under-served group of survivors. The members choose to name this group “Headspin”. Over the past months the group has gone bowling, played billiard, played mini-put, connected for a meal, gone to a coffee bar and participated in cooking classes where they prepared a meal which they got to sit down and enjoy afterwards. As a special treat, some members recently attended an afternoon Blue Jay game.

BIAPH’s caregiver relief program is sustained through donations, fund raising efforts and sponsorships. This program provides successful applicants with 4 hours of PSW services weekly for one year. Depending on circumstances the PSW attempts to take the client out for an activity offering some respite to the caregivers. BIAPH is an active participant in the Peer Mentoring Program; our association has been recognized as having the most matches in the province.

Our upcoming plans include expanding the reach of our support group program to under served areas within our borders.

Thank you again for this consideration, good luck to all the nominees.

Jorun Rucels

Executive Director – BIAPH

For more information visit: www.biaph.com

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VOTING
IS NOW OPEN
AUGUST 8th TO SEPTEMBER 15th

11 Comments

  • Tyler Mills says:

    BIAPH has been able to function in Halton since 1986 behind the scenes, providing individuals with brain injuries support in all faculties and in all capacities. The volunteers I have met, the advocates I have heard, and the survivors that attend the meetings are some of the closest connections that I have made in the last few years.

    I want to quickly mention the value of their youth program which is starting to see the light of day and is being run by excellent facilitators who are great listeners, teachers and are always engaged in us. This new initiative stemmed from the adult groups held monthly. And those groups have also been great.

    My intelligence dropped in all capacities after my brain injury, and the BIAPH monthly adult sessions provided me with access to a very mature group of survivors who drive the knowledge sharing in the group. I felt that I was learning a lot at these meetings about doctors, injury lawyers and the volunteers that make the struggles of connecting in the real world somewhat bearable. Some of the guests are advocates who will actually go and fight to make sure we are reimbursed monies, find doctors, get groceries etc.

    But the parents of survivors were the only ones attending; the kids weren’t as comfortable seeking support of the community. But thanks to the youth group, we now have a network for the youth, which acts as a low stress, social network for us young adults to heal. It builds friendships, it builds trust and hope. For those who find that the brain injury has changed their lives, the group even creates instant closeness with others. In a way, it provides a gateway to the world that wasn’t there before. That can only be found if you take a deep breathe, accept where you are and what you are capable of now, and then go from there.

    Lastly, some of the group members in the youth group are amazingly talented individuals who appreciate your support. There are musicians, artists, free spirits, good Samaritans and athletes all coming together to have a great time

  • V. A. (Mother of member of BIAPH youth group “Headspin”) says:

    BIAPH has provided wonderful support for our family since my daughter’s ABI six years ago. Jorun has recently created a youth group that combines recreational outings and meetings allowing for a time to meet up with friends and do something different! Jorun is a proactive leader and through the creation of this new group demonstrates how she is always listening to her members and looking for ways to improve the quality and enjoyment of life for survivors and their families.

    Thank you!

  • J.E. Oakville Father says:

    The Headspin program is unique, valuable and a differentiator. It has been a key part of our son’s community engagement and social network.

    You may recall that Thomas had an anoxic brain injury just over 3 years ago. We’ve been learning and exploring a lot since then. One observation we’ve made is that most government programs are geared to other life-long developmental delay clients… such as Autism. BIAPH’s Headspin is one of only TWO social programs available for young adults like Thomas. Although he is very involved in Special Olympics, it’s the events held through Headspin that lifts his spirit… lifting his spirit due to the social nature of the program. With young adults with varying degrees of brain injury. “just like him”.

    In addition to being a social event, it has placed Thomas in an environment with like-challenged individuals. It has opened his eyes to “more people like me”… allowing him to actually acknowledge that he has challenges. The program and the counsellors are a Godsend. Their energy and approach have been fantastic.

    Thank you for making this happen.

  • PM - “Headspin” - Youth Support Group Facilitator says:

    Jorun is personally dedicated to BIAPH’s cause and is a fantastic benefit to the organization.
    She is wonderfully organized and always gives 110% to the job.
    Events always run very smoothly when Jorun is involved and she always has a smile for everyone!
    T.S. Georgetown – Brain Injury Survivor, Attendees support groups and BIAPH Volunteer

    BIAPH is simply sensational; with lovely group members, magnificent caregivers, wonderful wonderful workers and amazing volunteers, not to mention multiple programs for different age groups and many annual events to educate the public, this type of organization is exactly what is needed in more places across the province. I am very thankful that an organization like this exists in my municipality.

    I hope BIAPH can continue to grow and positively influence many more lives in the years to come!

    Thank you BIAPH.

  • D.D. Caledon, ON – Brain injury Survivor says:

    It is my true honour, on behalf of BIAPH, to convey how fortunate and thankful my family and I feel to have been part of such a wonderful support group since 2012. After my Traumatic Brain Injury, my perception of who I was and the goals that I should realistically strive to set for my future was clouded by my negative perceptions and my limited understandings of my brain recovery. As a survivor, I was dealing with many issues, therapies, and loss of self-confidence. I really felt alone in my struggles. From my very first meeting I felt a part of a very inclusive, caring and informative setting. The constant stress that my husband was carrying on his shoulders as my main caregiver and advocate was almost immediately lessened when he sat with others, shared experiences and just talked. We feel so comfortable in the meetings. BIAPH has provided invaluable knowledge and strategies to us through a wide variety of speakers. We live in Caledon and yet we drive to all four community locations in Peel and in all of these settings we feel welcomed and valued. Our family and I attribute my improved self-image to the unwavering commitment by the people organizing our meetings and outings. BIAPH has been an integral and invaluable part of my continued progress.

  • E.R. Campbellville, Brain Injury Survivor says:

    The BIAPH team have provided me, and our family, a chance for understanding, a place for support, and connections to learning and friendship to help us all understand, develop strategies and cope with the challenges of brain injury, that we haven’t been able to obtain through the various myriad of medical services. This group and Jo, has allowed us to feel ‘connected’ through education and direct support via our meetings and materials outside of the group sessions. Jo is always encouraging participation amongst the group, as well as with related events, constantly sharing with the group on a regular basis. I have gained much insight and understanding via the professional presentations, and have formed some great friendships. The social events have also been enjoyed by our entire family and friends.

    Thanks BIAPH, and Jorun, for your tireless and ongoing dedication.

  • K. O'D says:

    Glad to vote

  • K. O'D says:

    Glad to vote for Genesis

  • Angie Cunningham says:

    BIAPH is an excellent resource and support to people with an abi in the Peel and Halton region. Since Jorun joined the organization the services and service area have expanded tremendously. Jorun is one of the most dedicated people I have ever known. She tirelessly advocates for people with an acquired brain injury and BIAPH is very fortunate to have her at the helm.

  • pm says:

    BIAPH is something special – the support and smiles the provide are life changing!

    Thanks you!!

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