As the year draws to a close and we continue to celebrate the Governments announcement of an Acquired Brain Injury strategy, our Director of Governance and Quality Assurance, Victoria, shared the importance of lived experience involvement in the development of the strategy:

Last week we celebrated the Government’s confirmation of the development of an Acquired Brain Injury Strategy, a policy commitment which is the result of the drive, determination and foresight of many individuals and organisations.

Over recent weeks across the Trust, people have been engaging with the campaign to generate support for Chris Bryant MP’s Private Members Bill calling for an ABI Strategy. I have been inspired by the voices of the people we support who have provided their voice and experience to drive forward change which will impact on their lives. People with Lived Experience provide a powerful and authentic voice and unique insights that can challenge assumptions, motivate organisations to do things differently and pinpoint areas for change.

“Many of our service users shared their hope that in the development of an ABI strategy they will be seen and their needs recognised. The visibility and participation of people with a brain injury in government policy is frustratingly poor. In this moment we have an opportunity to urge government to develop this new strategy for people with brain injury, informed by people with a brain injury.

The experts by experience in our organisation, and beyond, recognise the need for a cohesive government strategy to meet the challenge of a condition which affects whole lives. This is our opportunity to develop an ABI strategy which enables people with lived experience to share their stories to create opportunities for meaningful occupational engagement, enabling social connectedness and contribution to society.

“Here at the Trust we will be working to ensure the voices of people we support are heard loud and clear as the Government works to draft this much needed strategy.”