As I researched groups supporting those like myself living with TBI, I found that the recent focus on sports-related TBI has been great for raising public awareness. Possibly because of this, I found many of the non-profit TBI support groups are focused on sports-related, or veteran related, TBI. While they are doing critically important work, I want people to know that there are those of us who do not fit in those groups or programs. We are regular people who live with brains that have been injured. Our injuries are difficult for us to understand ourselves, even as they are difficult for others to understand. We have to grieve our loss ourselves. We have to watch our loved ones live with the confusing changes in us. Like everyone else, we have to figure out each day—but for us it is more challenging and unpredictable.
I have found support for forming the TBI Resource Foundation, from friends, family, TBI professionals and others. We have completed incorporation of the foundation and are obtaining our non-profit status. I want to inspire others with TBI to push forward, as I have tried to do. The foundation’s goal is to inspire you to help those with TBI by being present with them, in whatever form that takes. As TBI Resource Foundation starts operating later this year, we will accept donations of your time, resources and money for specific projects to support those living with TBI. Current plans are to use donations for:
- Micro grants of <$1,000 to individuals with TBI awarded according to guidelines set by our advisory board of TBI professions.
- Major grants of <$1,000 to TBI support groups awarded by our advisory board of TBI professions.
- Providing a clearinghouse of TBI resources on our website.
- Providing peer-to-peer TBI support through our website.