Volunteer shortlisted for national award after giving her time generously to help brain injury survivors

A Sussex volunteer, whose life has been affected by brain injury, has been nominated for a national award after giving her time to people living with brain injuries.

Wednesday, 20th November 2019, 3:26 pm
Updated Monday, 25th November 2019, 3:49 pm
Sussex volunteer, Gillian Richards, photo by Picasa

Despite numerous challenges, Brighton resident Gillian Richards, 58, from Kemptown, has dedicated much of her life’s work to helping others.

Her grandmother and mother suffered strokes, and she was diagnosed with post-concussion syndrome after a head injury in 1997, aged 36.

Gillian has now been shortlisted for the title of Volunteer of the Year at Headway’s National Brain Injury Awards.

Sussex volunteer, Gillian Richards

She said: “I was deeply touched when I found out I had been nominated for Headway’s Volunteer of the Year Award.

“For me, it’s not just recognition of what I’ve managed to do, but of the work of my clients, their families, and my colleagues, along with the support of my own family, friends, and healthcare specialists.

“It’s a real honour to be recognised for the work we’ve all done within and beyond the community of people affected by acquired brain injury in East Sussex.”

After regularly volunteering to help others with acquired brain injuries (ABI), Gill trained to become a qualified counsellor in 2012 despite the challenges posed by her condition such as severe balance problems, limited mobility, visual processing difficulties, and chronic fatigue.

Gill was nominated for the award by Michele Fleming, a trustee at brain injury association, Headway.

Michele said: “Gill has helped so many people at Headway East Sussex, not only within her professional capacity, but through her kind, understanding, and generous nature.

“Through using her own experience with brain injury, Gill is able to connect with the clients and build positive relationships...

“She really is an unsung hero and winning this award would be an excellent way of recognising all her hard work!”

The winner of the award, which is sponsored by Anthony Gold Solicitors, will be announced at a luncheon on December 6 at the InterContinental London in Mayfair.

Headway is the UK’s leading brain injury charity which provides support, services, and information to brain injury survivors, their families, and their carers, as well as to professionals in the health and legal fields.

Find out more about Headway at its website.