Brain injuries impact victims, and their families, in many ways. Too frequently, they arise without warning and the impact can be both devastating and long-standing. I remember how deeply sad I felt when a longstanding client lost her life in a matter of days to a silent stroke. I will always remember Franziska as a feisty, tenacious, vivacious, healthy woman. Personality plus! Her premature death left her husband, Les, her parents, and all who loved her, feeling angry and bewildered. After a difficult period, Les embarked on a personal pilgrimage – walking the Camino in Spain. 800km’s in 37 days. His journey not only helped him to come to terms with Franziska’s loss, but also raised significant funds to provide resources and support to victims of stroke, and their families.
Today, Les continues to partner with Synapse whose vision is for a world where anyone affected by a brain injury is able to lead a life of quality, based on their own decisions and choices. Nation-wide Synapse seeks to focus both government and public support to raise funding for the development of highly specialist services in the areas of accommodation, education, and training. Our contribution is used to provide a much-needed point-of-contact (a Family Liaison Officer) to guide families through the initial dark and confusing days. I am proud to support this very valuable cause.