Brain Injury Awareness Week -The Invisible Disability

Brain Injury Awareness Week 2019 occurs from August 19 to 25, and is an opportunity to raise awareness about the causes, symptoms and impacts of brain injury.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, over 700,000 Australians have a brain injury. Three in every four of these people are aged 65 or under.

Brain injury is often called the ‘invisible disability’ because there may be no external or physical signs. Raising awareness and education goes a long way towards treating people with brain injury more equally.

People with brain injury also have the right to work, and employment plays a vital role in recovery, general wellness and quality of life.

Sunshine Coast father-of-two Darron Eastwell suffered a traumatic brain injury in a mountain biking accident in 2015.

The former senior banking executive worked extremely hard at his recovery over the last four years, but still had one more goal to tick off his recovery list – he was still to achieve his goal of returning to work.

Darron signed up with STEPS Employment Solutions to get the support and training he needed to achieve his employment goals.

With the support of STEPS, Darron started working at Mambo Coffee Roasters after completing their specialist barista training course then additional work experience and has not looked back.

STEPS Employment Solutions Maroochydore site leader Angie Dorman said in only a few months Darron found his niche and was successfully placed into paid employment.

“In a short period of time he was contributing to his family’s finances and making new connections through work, right where he wanted to be, continuing to achieve his goals,” Angie said.

“We got to know Darron’s goals, we knew that returning to the workforce was a very important step,” Angie said.

Darron hopes that his story may provide others with motivation to keep positive and push themselves.

“My wife took on the role of providing and caring for our family after my accident, now I get to contribute too,” Darron said.

“I want a career, not just a job, and I want to be part of a network, meet people and be a contributing member of society.

Darron’s employers Rick and Jacque Caspersen believe in the value of a diverse and inclusive workforce, they know that people with disabilities bring a whole new suite of strengths to their business such as increased problem-solving skills, persistence, adaptability, willingness and loyalty.

STEPS Employment Solutions specialise in supporting recruitment for people with injury, illness and disability, they help customers with tailored support and advice to assist them with their career pathways, as well as provide on-the-job support to ensure the best outcome for both the employer and employee.

During Brain Injury Awareness Week you can help raise awareness, by talking to friends and family and sharing information online about brain injury.

Find out more at www.stepsemploymentsolutions.com.au

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