paul for brain recovery

Family Support

Here at P.A.U.L For Brain Recovery, we understand the importance of supporting families living with brain injury. A brain injury does not just affect the person with the brain injury, it affects everyone around them.   

We are here to support you on your journey with acquired brain injury 

In addition to being a family member of someone with a brain injury, you are more than likely to provide care for them. Despite this, most family members do not see themselves as carers.  

Living with and Acquired Brain Injury - The families Journey

Taking care of yourself is crucial as a family member or carer of someone with an acquired brain injury (ABI), and here are some of the main reasons why:  

  • Prioritising self-care leads to increased happiness and health, benefiting the entire family  
  • Self-care leads to better management of daily responsibilities, as these responsibilities may increase. You can handle challenges more effectively, when well-rested and balanced 
  • It will allow you to improve relationships with others, contributing to your overall well-being 
  • Self-care enhances your ability to identify solutions to problems, which are essential for addressing the unique challenges faced by brain injury survivors and their families  
Family Support Group

We are here to help 

We don’t just offer support to people who have a brain injury, but also to affected families. We provide a safe and non-judgmental space for family members to meet others in a similar situation, allowing experiences to be shared and highlighting that you are not alone in your journey. 

What can you do? 

  • Ask for help when you need it 
  • Take time for yourself 
  • Exercise, eat healthily, and sleep well
  • Relax regularly
  • Stay in touch with friends
  • Attend our family support sessions, which are designed to support you
  • Access all available services and funding
  • Acknowledge your feelings and accept them as a natural response to the situation

Through our ‘Ideas Fund’ research project, we have further developed our understanding of how brain injury affects families and friends. As part of our project, we facilitated creative workshops to allow affected families to share their experiences and support each other. These workshops have significantly improved the mental well-being of those who participated.  

Family workshop held in October

Here is some feedback from families who have attended our sessions: 

Come and listen, you are not alone, we’ve all had different experiences, but in some ways, we’ve all gone through the same things”.  

This was the first thing (I have attended) for me after my husband’s brain injury and it has almost been therapy”.  

“I feel better talking to others I don’t feel alone”.   

It is a safe place to express, cry, laugh, and relate to people”.  

It feels good to know I am not the only one out there feeling this way or going through it”.  

It’s a great way to meet like-minded people, it’s time out for you and a chance to share (if you want to). A ‘no pressure’ chance to chat, share, and understand”.  

“Just go, you will find out that you are not alone”.  

Increased awareness of how ABI affects families”.  

Keep an open mind – it does help. It is a safe space to cry and that helps too!”  

Being part of a group helps with dealing with your experience emotionally – as well as in terms of practical hints and tips”. 

 Connecting with other families has made me realise that I am not alone, and it has made it a whole lot easier for me to process it all. It truly has helped me to control the discomfort associated with thinking about or discussing what we have experienced as a family. Instead, I feel positive above our level of resilience as we face daily challenges”. 

“You become a part of a community, feeling supported and understood. It’s a place to share your queries/worries and be reassured. Finally, it improves your well-being as talking really does help”.  

You will be listened to. People ask but they don’t really want to know. Here, everyone gets it. They listen and also understand“.

Family Support Showcase event

We were really excited for our Family Support Project Showcase at the Humber Street Gallery. Our Co- researchers and their families were joined by representatives from the Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, City Health Care Partnership, and the University of Hull to celebrate the amazing research they have been involved with.

This animation was developed with our co-researchers as part of our Ideas Fund Family Support Project. Our co-researchers consisted of 13 family members, who had all been affected by acquired brain injury (ABI). As part of our project, we explored the experiences of families living with ABI. This animation was a co-production between the families and the artist.

The animation shines a light on some of the difficulties and challenges families face living with ABI and has the aim of providing hope to other families who are living with ABI, so they know they are not alone.

If you are a family member affected by brain injury, we would like to invite you to join one of our family support sessions. All our sessions and activities are delivered in a relaxed and informal environment, and free to attend. Please get in touch for more information.