The Falls Garden
WPH gives major boost to project supporting people with brain injuries
A £21,000 appeal to expand a sensory garden which helps patients being treated for brain injuries under the care of the Central England Rehabilitation Unit (CERU) regain their confidence and independence has been pledged £5,000 by the WPH Charitable Trust.
In-patients who have suffered a stroke, brain injury or tumour are among the many who benefit from the garden at Leamington Spa Hospital, one of the top facilities of its kind in the country.
Other patients in need of physical rehabilitation are offered use of the garden – such as out-patients who use the hospital’s eight-week falls prevention, strength and balance exercise programme, with a 20-minute course of obstacles featuring within the 90-minute, weekly rehab sessions.
The project was initiated following the success of a similar scheme in the Netherlands which recorded a 46 per cent reduction in the number of falls among patients who completed a programme which included an interactive, indoor rehabilitation space which would simulate day-to-day obstacles and hazards faced outside a hospital environment.
Existing features in Leamington Spa Hospital’s garden include a gravel path, sloping paving and a raised area.
New features as a result of the appeal will include a slalom course, stepping stone path, uneven surface, bridge, activity board, wire loop challenge and cognitive therapy facilities.
Each obstacle is designed to simulate everyday hazards around the home and garden as well as outdoors, while helping to improve balance and mobility, helping to increase confidence when faced with hazardous situations, both on foot and in wheelchairs.
It will complement the hospital’s therapy garden – which includes raised beds for patients to plant fruit and vegetables – all part of the hospital’s dedicated rehabilitation programme which offers rounded emotional, cognitive, physical and spiritual support to patients.
Up to 100 people a year will benefit from the project.
Jayne Blacklay, Deputy Chief Executive, said the aim was to get the project up and running by the summer.
She added: “We are extremely grateful to the WPH Charitable Trust for their generous donation.
“This unique, specialist rehabilitation course will offer lots of benefits to our patients. As the project is an enhancement to the therapy provided by the NHS it is thanks to fundraising and the support of local organisations such as the WPH Charitable Trust that we will be able to create it.
“I would like to take the opportunity to thank everyone who has donated so far and to encourage more people to get involved and help make a real difference to the lives of patients.”
Find out more about the appeal at http://www.ceru.co.uk/additional-support/fundraising.aspx
Established in 1994, WPH Charitable Trust provides funding support for individuals, groups and organisations which work to prevent, relieve and cure sickness in Coventry and Warwickshire.
Grants are available for medical research, buildings, equipment and other forms of medical care for residents of the region. All applications are made via the Trust’s website, and are assessed on a quarterly basis.
For further details on the Trust, or to make an online application, log on to www.warwickshirehealthcharity.org.uk