Seated Pilates sessions run by Karen Watson of Powerhouse Pilates are a huge hit with our clients.
Pilates focuses on improving muscle strength, flexibility, balance, breathing and posture. Our clients respond so well, and even comment on not only the physical benefits they feel afterwards, but the positive mental benefits too, using the brain to focus and channel mindfulness.
Physical light impact exercise is something we are constantly working to focus on at HEN, thank you to Karen for kindly donating her time and expertise to provide these beneficial sessions.
Client Martin was keen to learn some basic I.T skills. Thanks to facilitator Sue for her 1-1 support, and client Scott for sharing his own skills with Martin during this great session. Our centre is ‘client-led’, and many of our activities and facilities are inspired by our clients’ preferences and suggestions. We aim to cater for all tastes, interests and abilities, and will always focus on what CAN be done, rather than what can’t.
The best times are with good friends and good food, and what a lovely afternoon we’ve had together at Stanwick Lakes for our annual Christmas Lunch!
This event means so much to us all and this year was no exception - huge thanks to Stanwick Lakes for their excellent hosting, and to all our amazing supporters and fundraisers who help make special times like this happen for everyone, especially our more isolated clients.
“Good food is all the sweeter when shared with good friends.”
We are very proud to showcase this fantastic project completed by client, Paul.
Paul wanted to make a foot stool for his house, and as a lover of big cats, decided on a tiger-print design.
New to woodwork, Paul designed, built AND upholstered this amazing piece of furniture from scratch and we think he’s done a first-class job. Never underestimate a survivor of ABI.
We had a brilliant time with our friends at the Nene Wetlands - Rushden Lakes, making tomato and garlic sauce with the very tomatoes that our clients planted back in March at our first visit!
The sauce tasted amazing - we enjoyed it together with pasta when we got back to the centre!
Big thanks to Viktoria and the team for their warm welcome and such an engaging session for our clients.
We had a fabulous evening at our fundraising Fashion Show last month! Our supporters raised an AMAZING £503.45!!! These funds will go directly to supporting those with an acquired brain injury and their families within our community.
A really creative Encaustic Painting session in the centre where our clients created some beautiful, intricate designs.
The technique involves liquifying pigmented wax with a painting iron, and using scraping, scratching and texturising movements to fuse layers and create beautiful designs and effects. This ancient technique dates back to the Greeks and Romans!
Creating art boosts improvement with cognitive function, emotional well-being, the development of expression, memory processing and the ability to recall information.
Spook-tacular pumpkin carving for Halloween
Our clients had a worked brilliantly together creating their own pumpkin designs and bringing them to life for Halloween!
There were some really creative ideas including teeth, fake blood and googly eyes!
A great activity enjoyed by all, helping our clients focus on forward-planning and decision making. Sincere thanks to our friends at Wellingborough’s Tesco store for the donation of the pumpkins!
We had an amazing night on Saturday 6th October, supporting the Raunds Ukulele Orchestra, ‘A Different Direction’ choir and friends at a fundraising concert in Rushden, dedicated to raising money for both Headway East Northants and the Cransley Hospice.
We were also bursting with pride to see some of our clients performing as the ‘Custard Caterpillars’, Headway East Northants’ music group. Playing not only ukuleles, glockenspiels and drums, but singing live too, the guys performed the Sam Smith hit, ‘Stay With Me’ and had the audience tapping its feet to ‘Bad Moon Rising’ by Credence Clearwater Revival.
Our facilitator Freyja and partner Chris not only performed themselves, but also dedicated a huge amount of time and hard work to organising and hosting a really professional gig. Our deputy manager Jonny Tudor also took to the stage for a solo performance, both singing and playing the guitar.
It was inspiring to see our wonderful clients conquer their nerves and perform live to a packed-out hall – amazing examples of what a brain injury survivor can achieve.
The gig was also generously supplied with drinks and cake, with both a raffle and competition to win an incredible Australian-themed gift hamper, filled with goodies from Down Under, so generously and thoughtfully put together by our volunteer, Broch.
Having totted-up the final figures, we’re thrilled to share that an amazing £405 EACH was raised on the night for both Headway East Northants and the Cransley Hospice. A huge thank you to all who came to support the night!
We’re absolutely delighted to announce Wilson Paterson and Tim Samples as new Trustees of the Board of Headway East Northants.
Tim is a client who attends our Irthlingborough centre, and Wilson is one of our volunteers who also has a loved one with acquired brain injury. Together, Wilson and Tim lead our weekly Peer Support Group.
We felt that their combined personal experience of dealing with acquired brain injury makes them excellent representatives of our client, volunteer and family groups involved with HEN, and we’re delighed that they’ve accepted our invitations.
Both Wilson and Tim bring valuable input to the Board and we’re very proud indeed to welcome them as trustees.
Volunteer Dave has kicked off the season in style, with his gorgeous handmade reindeer, all of which sold out at our coffee morning, so Dave will be busy back in our workshop putting together some more, such is demand!
Each reindeer is unique and handcrafted from all natural materials. Here’s Dave above (far right) picture with two of our clients (and a whole herd behind them, all of which have found new homes for Christmas already!).
So, not content with smashing the London Marathon for us this year, and not content with raising over £4,000 for our centre, our fantastic ‘Team HEN’ runner, Rob Stewart, kindly donated some free time to volunteer at our centre to carry out some DIY and odd jobs around the building.
Rob carried out some tip-runs for us (in very grim weather we might add), put up a new blind in our staff room, and also gave our Quiet Room a much-need fresh coat of paint. Nothing was too much trouble and we are immensely grateful to Rob for all of his support.
Becky and her family enjoyed meeting lots of visitors at this year’s Charter Fair in Thrapston High Street. This year, the fair was ‘Caribbean’ themed (very appropriate, considering the seriously hot weather!). The high street had themed food and drink stands and also a brilliant live steel band from Luton (a member of which works at Headway Luton – small world!).
Our stand included a very popular tombola, gorgeous handmade shabby chic craft items, some very special spirit-bottle lights (made by one of our Marathon runners) and plenty of leaflets and information about our centre. Visitors were really interested and enjoyed reading about who we are and what we do! We made a nice amount of smile-money – £82.10 to be precise! – but more importantly, we managed to raise a lot more awareness of our charity in that part of the county of East Northants
We were so touched by a very kind-hearted gesture made by volunteer, Broch.
For her birthday, Broch decided that rather than friend and family sending cards and gifts from as far afield as her native Australia, to instead set up a Facebook donation page especially for Headway East Northants, and ask people to make a donation instead!
This lovely gesture has raised £500 for our centre! We thank Broch sincerely and are so pleased to have someone like this as part of our volunteer squad!
Wow, we were very spoilt at our annual summer barbecue on the 27th June! The weather was incredible and our friends at Tesco and Morrisons were so generous with their donations of delicious burgers, sausages, buns and sauces, with drinks supplied from soft drinks firm A.G Barr ensuring we were all VERY well fed and watered!
Our fabulous volunteer, Joan and husband Paul, kindly opened up their home and garden to host the event, which welcomed clients, staff, volunteers and loved ones. Volunteer Dave also brought along some old-school sports day equipment, so we all got busy with hula hoops, egg and spoon racing and sack races!!! We all had such good fun relaxing together in the sunshine and some fantastic memories were made.
Claire, Becky and Jonny, along with HEN Chairman, Dr Keith Jenkins, and fellow HEN trustee, Mary Lees, were delighted to host our ‘London Marathon Celebration Evening’ on Monday 3rd June.
Our talented facilitator, Freyja, designed and created this incredible ‘thank you’ banner pictured below, and we enjoyed putting together a ‘Photo Memory’ board, including runner quotes, for our guests to enjoy.
We were so pleased to see our runners again, and hear their stories and memories from that incredible day. It was inspiring to hear of the hard work and perseverance all our runners displayed, battling on through severe blisters, tight muscles and wobbly toenails (EEEK!) to cross the famous finishing line.
Once again – to each and every member of ‘Team HEN 2019 – thank you all so much for your phenomenal efforts for our charity. Together, you’ve managed to raise just over £50,000 – above and beyond expectation and enabling us to continue and enrich the services we provide to those living with ABI, and their families. You are all amazing.
We were delighted to welcome colleagues from Headway UK to our centre back in June, who wanted to come along and see what we’re all about!
It was our pleasure to meet Rachel, Helen and Zak who’d travelled down from Headway UK’s base in Nottingham – they were interested to see the goings-on at one of the local Headway branches and chose ours. We enjoyed introducing Rachel, Helen and Zak to our clients, volunteers and staff members, showing them around our centre, and enabling them to see our varied, fun activities ‘in action’. We were also pleased to host lunch for the guys, too. Rachel tells us that all three thoroughly enjoyed their time with us!
Tuesday morning music volunteer, Dave, had the amazing experience of riding the world’s fastest zip-wire ride during a recent break in Wales.
Dave shot through Penrhyn Quarry at over 100mph, travelling around 1500 metres in a mind-boggling 90 seconds!
“It was a close as you could get to flying”, Dave tells us. “As soon as I got off, I wanted another go!”
Dave got chatting to a fellow rider at the quarry and told him about Headway East Northants and the work we do – the chap then put his hand in his pocket and donated £5 on the spot! So thank you to the mystery fellow adrenaline-junkie!
Dave has now acquired the nickname ‘Dangerous Dave’ here at our centre – we wonder what he’ll have planned next? Good to have you back on solid ground, Dave!
Claire, Becky and Kate were pleased to attend the Christmas charity awareness event back in December at Rushden’s Waitrose store.
The event, organised between Waitrose and Northamptonshire Carers, offered us a great platform to talk about who we are and what we do here at Headway East Northants and we met some lovely people including carers, NHS staff members, brain injury survivors and their loved ones, and fellow local charities, to share our stories.
We were delighted to have the chance to raise further awareness of Headway East Northants, and thank both Waitrose and Northamptonshire Carers for the opportunity to attend.
Clients have recently been enjoying some lovely watercolour art sessions recently. With support from facilitator Freyja – herself a very talented artist – clients have enjoyed sitting together relaxing and exploring their creativity using watercolours. Some excellent pieces were produced and it was a great exercise in concentration and a steady hand. Great stuff, guys!
A big thank you to all who turned out to support our annual Easter coffee morning fundraiser on April 18th. We had a great morning and were really well supported by staff and volunteers, our clients and their families, and local supporters too!
We enjoyed an Easter raffle with some lovely prizes – I.T volunteer Alan was lucky enough to scoop the top prize of the Easter goody hamper! We also did well from our craft sales, including the super-cute chicks and bunnies hand-knitted with love by volunteers Cynthia, Di and Jan.
Deputy manager, Jonny, was even sponsored by volunteer Dave to wear our daft chicken hat for two hours – which he did with panache! Strike a pose, Jonny!
A total of £232 was raised for the centre – brilliant! Every penny of this can be used to enrich and support the lives of our clients.
Special thanks again to Emma of Wellingborough Tesco, and Helen at Morrisons for their generous donations of Easter goodies.
Our clients had a great morning enjoying pyrography, which is the art of burning patterns/designs onto wood or leather using a heated, pen-shaped tool.
With support from Facilitator, Sue, clients created some beautiful wooden ‘shabby chic’ hearts, planning and creating their own designs. Some even incorporated coloured wax for a more vibrant finish.
Finally, the guys added some magnetic tape to create custom-made fridge magnets.
Pyrography is a technique requiring concentration and a very steady hand, so the guys did absolutely brilliantly. This is what HEN is all about – focusing on what CAN be done and taking on board new skills!
Thanks to Jeremy Applegarth of Linde Material Handling East, Claire and Jonny have successfully completed a course on operating our brand new defibrillator machine.
Jeremy kindly allocated two places on the training course free of charge, and both Claire and Jonny are now fully qualified in operating the defibrillator, which is kept at our Irthlingborough centre.
Our thanks to Jeremy at Linde Material Handling East, for allocating the places. It is of course our sincerest hope that the machine will never be needed, but great to know we’re set and ready in the event of an emergency.