The projects below have been successfully completed. For any enquiries about commissioning a service in your area, please contact us via email at foundation@thedtgroup.org or call us on 01444 239123.

Through all the projects we have developed a validated Brain Injury Screening Index (BISI) ®

HMP Drake Hall

Women with a brain injury at HMP/YOI Drake Hall were supported by a Brain Injury Linkworker (BIL) from the Disabilities Trust in the first scheme of its kind in a women's prison in the UK, from September 2016 to March 2018.

Funded by The Pilgrim Trust and The Barrow Cadbury Trust, the pilot Linkworker service delivered direct one-to-one support to women where a history of brain injury was identified through the use of The Disabilities Trust's Brain Injury and Screening Index (BISI). The service has been independently evaluated by Royal Holloway, University of London and the Making the Link report was launched in Westminster on 6th February 2019.

Early findings show that:

  • 196 - the number of severe blows to the head reported
  • 62% of 100 women (who reported a total of 137 incidents of TBI) had sustained their TBI due to domestic violence
  • 25 years was the average age of women at first brain injury, however, nearly a quarter (24%) had their first injury at 16 years
  • 75% of women referred to the BIL had a prior mental health diagnosis
  • 44% had offences for violence
  • Reduced anxiety and depression levels were reported at the point of discharge from the service

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HMP Drake Hall Evaluation

Download a copy of the executive summary of the independent evaluation by Royal Holloway University here
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Making the Link: Female Offending and Brain Injury

Download the report here

To download the full independent evaluation by Royal Holloway University click here.

Linkworker in office at HMP Drake Hall

The aims of the project were to:

  • identify women with a brain injury who entered custody
  • develop a care pathway and provide dedicated support to women with a brain injury
  • raise awareness of brain injury within the female prison population
  • explore causal links between self-harm, violence and brain injury in the female prison population

Our services deliver direct one to one support for people with brain injury and develop partnerships with health, social care, probation, homeless, and drug and alcohol services to ensure each individual has the appropriate support network in place

HMP Leeds and Leeds homeless community

Our recent projects include a prison Linkworker service at an adult male prison, HMP Leeds, and a homelessness Linkworker service based in the Leeds community working with a number of local organisations including St George's Crypt and Emmaus.

Our services delivered direct one-to-one support for people with brain injury and develop partnerships with health, social care, probation, homeless, as well as drug and alcohol services to ensure each individual has the appropriate support network in place.

Veterans Project 2016

The Disabilities Trust Foundation in partnership with Combat Stress worked on a service supporting ex-service men and women in the community.

The project built on the significant impact achieved by Prison and Homeless Linkworker Services and sought to improve outcomes for help-seeking Veterans by developing personalised interventions to support them to better access existing services. Previous research conducted by the Foundation and Combat Stress has indicated that 63% of all new referrals screened positive for brain injury on their initial assessment showing a clear need for the Foundation to develop a service to support this population. As part of the project we also conducted research assessing the impact of the Brain Injury Linkworker service in conjunction with Combat Stress and Kings College London.

This project has now come to an end and its legacy is now being addressed.

Youth Offender Institutions (YOI) at Wetherby and Hindley

chain link inside a womens prison

In 2015 we completed a two year pilot of Linkworker services in HMYOI Wetherby and HMYOI Hindley. These services adapted the adult Linkworker service model for young offenders who were from two distinct age groups: 15 to 18 and 18 to 21 year olds.

The Linkworker engaged with complex and vulnerable young people, many of whom had been otherwise disengaged from previous support available in prisons. This enabled the Linkworker to address some very challenging behaviours and encouraged engagement with other services including healthcare and education. An audit of these services was undertaken by the University of Exeter and the Evaluation Report has now been published.

Our services deliver direct one-to-one support for people with brain injury and develop partnerships with health, social care, probation, homeless, and drug and alcohol services to ensure each individual has the appropriate support network in place.

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