Top Gear star Richard Hammond has given his backing to the launch of a new charity-funded website providing information and support to the parents of children with acquired brain injury (ABI).
The new website, called the Brain Injury Hub (www.braininjuryhub.co.uk), has been created by The Children’s Trust, Tadworth, the national charity which runs the UK’s largest rehabilitation centre for children with acquired brain injury.
The BBC presenter, who is a Vice-President of The Children’s Trust and suffered a serious brain injury himself when he was involved in a car crash whilst filming in 2006, said:
“There are thousands of children in the UK living with the long-term effects of an acquired brain injury right now. Their injury will have a major impact on every aspect of their life – their education, relationships with family and friends and their future.
“The entire family needs robust information and support, but until now that just hasn’t been widely available. The Children’s Trust’s Brain Injury Hub will at last provide these families with the information they need and a forum to share their experiences. I’m proud to give it my backing.”
The Brain Injury Hub offers comprehensive information as well as a discussion forum for parents and family members. The content of the site is based on the specialist clinical expertise that has been developed at The Children’s Trust in over 25 years of providing services to children with acquired brain injury.
Parents of children with ABI have also shared their stories and made their own suggestions about what should be included. The website has been accredited with the Information Standard, the Department of Health’s quality mark for reliable sources of health information.
Chief executive of The Children’s Trust Andrew Ross said:
“The Children’s Trust has a long history of providing specialist care and support to children with acquired brain injury and the Brain Injury Hub sees us sharing our expertise with many thousands more families around the country.
“We are extremely grateful to the generous donors whose charitable support has enabled us to build this important resource.”
Thousands of children in the UK have an acquired brain injury (see note below for more information on prevalence). Brain injuries in children are often caused by road accidents or falls, but there are also non-traumatic causes such as a brain tumour, choking or meningitis.
Many children are left with severe disabilities as a result of a brain injury, while others can appear to have made a full physical recovery and yet may be left with significant, life-long difficulties with their behaviour, memory or concentration. For this reason, acquired brain injury is often called the ‘hidden disability’.
The Children’s Trust campaigns for better recognition of children’s acquired brain injury and to ensure that children and families affected by ABI have access to the information, support and specialist services they need.
Katie is the parent of a child with a brain injury and has already found the Brain Injury Hub a valuable resource. She said:
“Our daughter suffered a stroke when she was just six years old. At the time, we had so many fears and questions about her future prognosis, but we were given very few answers. Every child with a brain injury is different, but having a place to go to for information or support from other families would have made a world of difference – not just to us, but also to our daughter’s grandparents, teachers and extended family.
"The information contained on the Brain Injury Hub is written by the experts and has already helped to explain many of the challenges that our daughter is currently facing due to her brain injury. Thanks to the Brain Injury Hub we now have new tactics and suggested methods of helping her overcome these challenges, so that she can live her life to the full.”
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