Page 21 - PIC-Magazine-Issue-22-Spring-Summer
P. 21

       New Brain Injury Rehabilitation Centre Generating Global Interest
Founded in 1976, the Lake District Calvert Trust is the inspiration
of John Fryer-Spedding, whose vision was to enable people with disabilities to benefit from outdoor activities in the countryside.
In June 2021, following Covid-enforced delays, the Lake District Calvert Trust opened Calvert Reconnections, a ground-breaking neuro-rehabilitation centre for people with Acquired Brain Injury. Over the last 12 months, Calvert Reconnections has delivered life- changing outcomes for ABI survivors and generated global interest.
People with ABI can sometimes find the set procedures of neuro-rehabilitation too clinical, inflexible and impersonal. At Calvert Reconnections, the centre’s expert clinical therapy team combines cognitive and physical rehabilitation with vocational and outdoor activities delivered within a unique nonclinical environment.
Participants, their families and Calvert’s clinical therapy team work together
to establish goals which address a range of areas including physical rehabilitation, mental wellbeing, and cognitive communication; all with the aim of maximising function. The process then feeds into the development of a personalised rehabilitation plan using a combination of functional and outdoor activities, uniquely integrated with clinical therapy. There is considerable support from medical research for the notion that outdoor activity is beneficial to brain injury rehabilitation and this aspect of Reconnections’ service makes it unique.
The centre’s innovative programme includes reflective activities such as fishing, bird watching and nature walks and higher adventure activities such
as sailing, canoeing, rock climbing and abseiling - all closely assessed and graded to a person’s interests and
functional abilities. Each goal is led by the participant to ensure maximum engagement and progress. The
process of goal setting is facilitated by Reconnections interdisciplinary team which includes Neuro Occupational Therapists, Neuro Physiotherapists, Neuro Speech and Language Therapists, Neuro Psychologists, Positive Behaviour Support Practitioners and Rehabilitation Coaches.
Participants at Calvert Reconnections are rightly proud of their life-changing achievements at the centre. 42-year- old Mark, from Shropshire, suffered a severe traumatic brain injury and was medically retired from his job as
a Facilities Manager.
“When my case manager brought me to Reconnections for a look around, I immediately felt at home,” explained Mark. “Although the centre doesn’t look or feel like a hospital, the clinical expertise is outstanding.”
Mark’s rehabilitation programme focused on cognitive and physical rehabilitation alongside daily living and vocational skills within the local community. Working with Reconnections’ clinical therapy team, his programme
covered fatigue management, coping strategies to deal
with frustration, mental wellbeing and physical fitness; all with the aim
of maximising function.
“I’ve made giant strides in a range of areas – particularly in terms of managing frustration and fatigue,” added Mark.
“By managing my fatigue I’ve significantly improved my fitness.”
Mark has particularly embraced the outdoor activities available at Calvert Reconnections, taking part in fell walking, kayaking, climbing and open water swimming.
“I’ve absolutely loved the way outdoor activities are integrated with clinical therapy,” he continued. “Having the expertise of the clinical staff and rehab coaches is inspiring. The scenery in the Lake District also unbelievable and the mindfulness element
of the programme has helped with my concentration and mental flexibility.”
Calvert Reconnections recently released its first clinical outcomes report.
The findings were as follows:
100% of participants improved their ability
to carry out everyday activities.
100% of participants needed less support when they were discharged and 60% have progressed onto independent living.
100% of participants reported an improved hope for the future and an improved sense of purpose and direction in their life.
90% of participants achieved their goals.
80% of participants felt more empowered through greater participation and control over decisions that affect their lives.
As further evidence of the centre’s global reach, a team of rehabilitation specialists from Japan visited the UK late last year. The Japanese delegation, from Senri Rehabilitation Hospital in Osaka and Mediva International in Tokyo, visited Calvert Reconnections to gain an insight into how the centre is expanding the horizons of brain injury rehabilitation. Head of the delegation, Dai Kiuchi, Senior Consultant at MEDIVA said: “We were inspired by our visit. The team’s innovative approach to brain injury rehabilitation is truly ground-breaking. It has opened our eyes to an exciting new approach. There’s nowhere like Calvert Reconnections anywhere in the world.”
                  For more information on Calvert Reconnections and our care and expertise visit:

   19   20   21   22   23