Volunteers Week 2020- Adam

Volunteers Week 2020- Adam

3rd June, 2020

After attending our Growing Together course, Adam gave us an update to tell us how it had helped manage his anxiety, increased his confidence and led to further volunteering and job opportunities in his local community. Last year he joined our Outdoor Project - a group which combines green woodworking and bushcraft, and we caught up with him to find out how it's been going; 

"I used to be a Headway Cambridgeshire client as I was the victim of an accident, and a couple of times it was mentioned that I might find volunteering in the group useful, but I tended to hide myself away at home. Eventually, I realised that maybe I didn’t need direct help from anyone as such, but perhaps I needed to be around other people who I could help. I do a lot of gardening and spoon carving and spend a lot of time by myself but being part of the Outdoor Project is really, really helpful for me.

I came to realise that I can bring an awful lot of practical skills and knowledge to the group with my background in engineering and my interests in gardening and woodwork. I enjoy helping people problem solve a task. Rather than getting them to just mimic me, I think about how I can get them to have an involvement. For example, if someone has neglect and can't see on one side, how do you help them drill holes in the right places or build a framework so it's stable?

Due to the effects of my own brain injury, every Tuesday morning, I’m still usually knackered by conversation, and being around people and I arrive thinking my head is just full of mush! But with the approach that the Outdoor Project has and the work we do, I just feel more energised and I go away feeling like I can take on the rest of the week! It’s odd…I say conversation slows me down but we talk a lot here and it doesn’t have that effect. There’s a different meaning to it, I don’t know what it is - maybe it’s Headway magic."

Adam (left) with some of the Outdoor Project group 

The Hospital Brain Injury Co-ordinator became someone who absolutely understood how I felt, I didn’t need to explain. I could talk about my fears and worries. She was such a great support through the difficult days, but could also celebrate the small step successes, which was important to me.