BIRT-Llanelli-022016_(09)

The Brain Injury Rehabilitation Trust (BIRT) was pleased to welcome leader of Plaid Cymru AM to its centre in Wales, Tŷ Aberdafen, on Monday 15th February. Ms Wood was joined on the visit by Helen Mary Jones, Plaid Cymru’s candidate for the Llanelli seat in the forthcoming Welsh Assembly elections.

Tŷ Aberdafen offers a range of high quality assessment and rehabilitation options for people with complex psychological and physical needs following an acquired brain injury(ABI).

The 24-bed centre, which has been open since July 2014, forms part of BIRT's UK network of services providing specialist rehabilitation for people with brain injuries and is the first BIRT service in Wales. BIRT has a further fourteen residential rehabilitation services across England and Scotland.

During their tour of the state-of-the-art environmentally friendly building Ms Wood and Ms Jones saw the fully accessible facilities, including self-contained flats for people at a later stage in their rehabilitation. They observed a craft class and chatted with people who live in the service. Health and social care issues in Wales were also discussed with service staff.

Speaking after the visit, Ms Jones said: “It was a pleasure to meet the people who live in Tŷ Aberdafen and hear what the service means to them. The staff are passionate about delivering excellent care and it is wonderful to have this specialist service here in Llanelli.”

Ms Wood commented: “It was fascinating to visit Tŷ Aberdafen and I have great admiration for the knowledge and dedication of the centre staff. People living there and receiving the services are encouraged to take part in a wide variety of activities, designed to help them re-acquire skills and move towards independent living.

"Hundreds of people in Wales sustain an acquired brain injury each year. It makes sense for Local Health Boards to refer patients to settings like Tŷ Aberdafen so people who don't have to be in hospitals can be supported close to their homes.”

Service Manager Dilwyn Jones added: “We were proud to show Leanne Wood and Helen Mary Jones the first-class service Tŷ Aberdafen delivers. We are always keen to engage with politicians locally and nationally to raise awareness of brain injury.”

Pictured in the photo are (from left to right): Leanne Wood AM (leader of Plaid Cymru), Dilwyn Jones (Service Manager, TŷAberdafen), Kerri Tunstall (BIRT Divisional Manager), Helen Mary Jones (Plaid Cymru candidate, Llanelli), Sarah Rufrancos (Policy and Campaigns Manager, The Disabilities Trust)