A 24-year-old mother who was left with a severe brain injury when she was struck by a car in Rugby is setting up a support group to help those with similar injuries.
Mother-of-one Jade Lambert is in the process of setting up Brinjury, which will be a support group for young people with acquired brain injuries.
Miss Lambert said those struggling with brain injuries can often feel isolated, and there is a shortage of support services in Rugby – made worse by the fact many people with brain injuries may not be able to drive elsewhere to access support.
She said: “I lost most of my friends when it happened and was completely isolated, I think people just didn’t know what to say or do so completely avoided me.
“Now I’m at a good stage in my rehabilitation I would like to set up a support group.”
After a number of meetings with Warwickshire CAVA, and the help of two trustees, Miss Lambert’s support group looks set to get the go ahead.
She said: “I was thinking of having fortnightly meetings and eventually having alternate meetings doing small activities like going for coffee.
“I am completely open to ideas and suggestions.”
She said she believes everything happens for a reason, and it may be that she is meant to use her experiences to help others.
When Miss Lambert was struck by a car in 2016 her injuries were so severe that a neurologist was flown to the site by air ambulance.
Her condition was too fragile to be flown, so she was rushed to Walsgrave hospital in a standard ambulance before being placed in a medically induced coma for three and a half weeks.
Her ongoing recovery has seen her battle a plethora of medical problems.
Miss Lambert said she spent the first year after her injury staying mostly at home, eating and gaining weight.
She said: “With brain injuries there’s this massive stigma – people don’t know what to say so they just say nothing.
“There’s nothing that should be said or done – people just need to be there to support someone.”
In June last year, Miss Lambert was allocated a support worker who began helping her to leave the house more.
She has since lost the weight she initially put on and, although her recovery is ongoing, she said she can do most things for herself – including looking after Ruby, her “full-of-life” four-year-old daughter.
When asked if she had any advice for someone with a brain injury, she said: “Don’t give up, don’t let it get you down, keep fighting.”
Miss Lambert said she would like to thank her parents, family and friends for their support. “They were amazing,” she added.
To learn more about the group, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can keep track of the latest Brinjury developments by joining their Facebook group, www.facebook.com/groups/700511086957152