By Margot Basketfield - Manager
In 1981, my life changed after my son sustained a traumatic brain injury as a result of a car accident. In 1982, after many months of searching I met a small group of people, made up of relatives, professionals and others who had a genuine desire to try to change the lack of understanding and services for brain injured people and their families. Without this small group of dedicated people Headway Northampton would not exist.
Since 1982, Headway Northampton has grown and developed from a coffee afternoon on a Wednesday to a three-day a week regular service. Throughout this time we have continued to provide care and support to those that have suffered the trauma of brain injury. Over the years, we have worked hard to raise the profile of brain injury and the services that are needed. None of this would be possible without the help and support from individuals, community groups and the business sector that give their time and raise money to help us to continue our life changing work.
Headway Northampton provides a community based unit and services for brain injured adults, as well as supporting their families. We continually evolve to meet the ever changing needs of people that reside in our community.
In 2008, Headway Northampton moved for the third time to Heathfield Way. This has provided the environment which Headway Northampton so desperately needed. For the first time in a number of years, we have an outdoor space which we have used for fetes and BBQ's as well as a great deal of indoor space which has allowed us to offer a wide range of groups and courses, which we could not previously have imagined.
In 2011, we opened "The Kennedy Suite". This facility allows our service users to access calming and relaxing treatments to help to improve their self esteem and reduce their high levels of anxiety. However, the facility also provides service users with an opportunity to maintain their own personal care in a user friendly environment. This is something which is priceless to those who are no longer able to attend to themselves in their own home.
In October 2014 Headway Northampton took the step to become a Charitable Incorporated Organisation. But whatever our status I feel that Headway Northampton has developed its unit services to an outstanding level and in the years to come I hope that we can provide these services both inside our unit and beyond. I would like us to begin to provide an outreach service for individuals with brain injury in Northamptonshire and would also like to go back to our roots, as a support group for both service users and their families in the evenings.
The needs of our Service Users are ever changing and Headway Northampton will continue to evolve with them with your continued help and support. To this end, our motto of over 30 years continues to be as relevant as ever.
“To move forward, to stimulate and inspire. Yet hope is unbroken.”