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Celebrating the Headwa...

Celebrating the Headway HealthUnlocked community Main Image

Celebrating the Headway HealthUnlocked community

Mon 25 Sep 2023

'Safe space', 'life-saving', 'lifeline' - just some of the ways that members describe the online community that brings together those affected by brain injury for support and information.

“It helps me to feel less alone”

For members who joined at its launch in 2012, it might be hard to believe that 11 years have passed. However, having welcomed its 10,000th member earlier this year, there is no doubt that the Headway HealthUnlocked community has been a phenomenal success. The reason for this is clear, with members taking the lead in sharing their experience, wisdom, compassion (and often humour!) to help people through the rollercoaster that is life after brain injury.

There are new posts on a vast range of topics every day. Whether it's brain injury survivors asking for ideas on how to cope with challenges like fatigue, memory problems or executive dysfunction, or family members looking for support in the early stages after a loved one's injury, it's a diverse and welcoming place to find support through the good and bad times.

But don't just take our word for it! To help us celebrate the 10,000 member milestone, we hand over to two of our valued members to share their stories of how the community has helped them to cope and adapt to life after brain injury.

"Headway means a huge amount to me and my family. In the early lost days, I would phone for help and advice. Now over two years later, I still check the forum several times a week, it helps me to feel less alone.

"Our lives have been devastated and changed beyond recognition by my husband's huge stroke. He still has a track and PEG feed, almost total paralysis, and can only communicate by using limited eye movements.

"I visit him daily and the forum helps keep me motivated as I attempt to keep up with his therapeutic exercises and also find suitable diversions for him. He has less official therapy now at the centre where he lives. I totally understand this.... I still keep up with friendships from before his stroke.

"People are kind but can't really understand what it is like, but 'forum friends’ do! Also, people don't want to visit as they find the change in him too upsetting. It is sad.

"The forum has helped me adjust and accept these things. Our lives have not finished. Although they are completely different, we are different, but we are coping now, thank you Headway."

- Silkwood20

"I'd like to thank all members of the Headway community on this forum, including moderators and the Helpline staff. I personally haven't used a Headway meet-up.

"The Headway Community has helped me in ways that are too numerous to mention. This community means I ALWAYS have somewhere I can go to either write or talk and that is invaluable.

"I have had questions all along the way and they have been answered by knowledgeable people - this is brilliant. Having this outlet and support means that I feel less alone and my journey has definitely been affected for the better in terms of my understanding.

"If you were to ask, ‘what would your journey have been like without the Headway community?’, then I am sure that others will agree it would be a lot more complicated when it comes to mental health and misery.

"Not saying we do not struggle with these things, but it is with support and education and that is quite different from being alone and not having essential information."

- Catrabb1t

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Headway - the brain injury association is registered with the Charity Commission for England and Wales (Charity no. 1025852) and the Office of the Scottish Regulator (Charity no. SC 039992). Headway is a company limited by guarantee, registered in England no. 2346893.

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