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Happy Brain Hour Success!

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picturethisgreenscreen21BIND: Brain Injury Network of Dallas is a Plano-based nonprofit organization with a unique and special mission. The BIND program offers tools and a bridge of support to adult brain injury survivors so they can reconnect into life, the community and the workplace. BIND offers refuge for survivors of stroke, traumatic brain injury and brain cancer who are looking for restored sense of purpose, hope and continued healing from their injuries.

 


“Here I have hope for the future me.”

Jennifer, brain cancer survivor

At BIND survivors are called Members, not Patients, and this is an empowering service model. The Members have ownership of daily operations and work in team units that include Communications, Outreach and Advocacy, Kitchen and Maintenance, and Wellness. Essentially, the Members guide and direct the program – allowing the program to serve as a classroom, office, gym, volunteer site, recreation room, social outlet, an art studio, and congregation. Above all else, the BIND program gives each person in attendance a reason to get out of bed and join in.

“BIND has given me a place to go and gives me purpose.”
Carrie, stroke survivor

BIND has partnered with The Medical Center of Plano since opening in early 2015 and was proud to work with them & their HCA partner Medical City Dallas to present the BIND Annual Silent Auction and Happy Brain Hour on October 15th at the Marriott. This event brought $47,000 of operational funding to the program and focused on fun! Guests were invited to challenge their minds through games like charades, hangman, timed mazes and memory tasks. Asking guests to tie a shoe or button a shirt using only one hand tested motor skills, as those with a brain injury may face living with a paralyzed arm or hand.

“It’s a safe place for me to relearn skills in the company of others with similar injuries.”
Taylor, traumatic brain injury survivor

At least 400 Texans each day receive medical care for brain injury and at least 34% of stroke survivors are considered ‘working age.’ The vision for BIND is to serve as the model for additional brain injury programs like theirs across the state of Texas. Currently, the BIND program is at capacity for both space and members served each week and has a waiting list of over 30 survivors of brain injury who find resolve in living a productive life versus one of inactivity and isolation. Consider joining the cause and supporting the BIND mission by making a gift today at www.thebind.org.

“We are so thrilled about the progress BIND has made. It is what we all hoped would happen. I share with everyone I can corner what BIND is and their mission. It is something you hope will not be needed, but I want people to know it is there if the need arises.”
Carol, BIND donor

Special thanks to our event photographers: Bruce Wolpert from Picture This Green Screen
and Jenice Johnson-Williams from Art is Life Studio.

2016 Happy Brain Hour Event Sponsors:
Medical City Dallas & The Medical Center of Plano

The Goodman Family
The Gary Shultz Family

Baylor Institute for Rehabilitation in Frisco
Warm Springs Rehab Hospital of Allen

PATE Rehabilitation
Rehab Without Walls
Carol & Frank Atkins
Donna Valentino

LearningRX
Accel Rehab Hospital
Lift-Aids, Inc.
Reno Realty Group
CNS: Centre for Neuro Skills

In-Kind Donors:
The Medical Center of Plano
Spectaveris
Austin Shaw, DJ
UNT & UTD Student Volunteers
K & R Artworks
Art is Life Studio
Martha Dahlberg

If you were a guest of ours this year, please take a few moments to complete this survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/KJ9W2Q9

Please Visit our Facebook Page for More Event Photos!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BrainDead Festicle + Brewvolution on Nov. 5

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screen-shot-2016-10-24-at-12-15-56-pmBig Texas Beer Fest and BrainDead Brewing have teamed up for the 2nd BrainDead Festicle!  The Festicle is a celebration of barrel-aged and wild beers.  BIND is the happy recipient of Festicle 2016 proceeds and will supply volunteer pourers for the event.

This event will take place outdoors in the parking lot west of BrainDead with 30-35 or so of their closest brewery friends, and 60-70 beers.  Chef David Catering and Bowls and Tacos food will be available for your eating pleasure.

Ready to buy a ticket?  Here you go: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/braindead-festicle-2016-tickets-27695165987?aff=eac2

Giving Day and YOU!

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IMG_1010Only 10 days until North Texas Giving Day 2016!  Join the community as we rally support for the BIND program on September 22nd.  Did you know?  This online day of giving set a record in 2015 and raised more than $30 million for charities in and near Dallas?!

This will be our third year to participate and we need YOU to spread the word!  Bonus funds and prizes are always a fun part of Giving Day….with bonus funds, your gifts of $25 and up will be multiplied.  Need to know more about bonus funds?  Click Here!

For our local supporters, join us in McKinney from 5-7 pm for Giving Day fun!  Need to know more about the Collin County Giving Day event?  Click Here!

By the numbers….

10 Days Until Giving Day!  Bookmark the BIND link today! #getupandgive

25+ Brain Injury Survivors are on our Wait List #timetoexpand

400 Texans are Treated for a Brain Injury EVERY DAY!

$2,825 Raised by our Board of Directors and a Generous Donor for Challenge Funds!

$5,000 Will Pay a Month of Rent for the BIND Program in 2017

$10,000 is our BIND Giving Day Goal #wecandoittogether

$130,000 To Double the BIND Program!

 

 

Noodle this & Noodle that…

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IMG_6208It was a beautiful summer day ten years ago in August, 2006 when everything suddenly changed for me.

Just a few months short of 50 years old, I was living a gifted life. I had been an accomplished student (3rd in my high school class), a talented athlete (set records in track), and a sax player that was selected to the city’s district band. I received full scholarship offers from colleges for each of these three skills, and I chose to go to West Point from which I graduated in 1978. After Army active duty service I joined the working public and eventually found myself moved up to VP of sales for a local Dallas company. Yes, everything was going very nicely for me. I mention all of the above, not to try to impress you with how wonderful I may think I am, but only to point out how quickly things can change if you were to lose it all.

In an instant, with a motor vehicle accident that very nearly killed me, I found out how dramatically things can be altered. I was on the way to a Rangers baseball game when I ran into stopped traffic for an accident that had happened in front of me on the freeway. While I was waiting to move past the stoppage a driver behind me fell asleep in his car that was moving at full speed. He damaged ten vehicles, but managed to hit me first. Fortunately for me, emergency personnel were already on hand for the accident in front of me and they were able to get to me quickly. They wrangled me out of my totaled vehicle, and after restarting my heart, sent me by helicopter to the emergency room. The initial prognosis was not good. I had broken every rib in my body in at least one place, punctured both lungs, damaged numerous organs, and in general was estimated at a very low chance to survive (2 out of 15). After two weeks in the emergency room attached to God-knows-what-all in order to save my life I was well enough to spend the next three months in a bed at the hospital. Then began the real hard part; therapy for the brain injury that I had sustained during my accident.

My losses were significant and numerous. I couldn’t walk and had a wheelchair with which to move around. My entire right side was initially paralyzed, and as I healed there was constant challenges to raising my right arm and moving my right leg. The worst however was the discovery that I had completely lost my communications skills. I couldn’t read and upon testing was found to be able to identify only two of the 26 letters of the alphabet. Needless to say, I couldn’t write anything because I couldn’t recognize and spell the words out. I couldn’t speak in a coherent fashion. Initially I had one noun with which I described everything: “noodle.” In my head I was saying everything that I was thinking, but I could tell from the reaction of those who were listening to me that something was desperately wrong. “Noodle” this and “noodle” that was not getting the job done. As is blatantly obvious, the new me is very different from the old me described earlier.

After nearly two and a half years of therapy, and a lot of hard work by the therapists, I came back to life. I am now able to read at a post-college level. I am able to write at nearly the same level. I am speaking beyond “noodle” now, and find many opportunities to speak to the general public at large about brain injury subjects. On the physical side I have completed several 5K road races, and although my right leg still wants to drag a bit, I am planning to achieve longer races.

In all I am very thankful that my accident happened while I was heading to meet customers for the game-night out. Considered a business accident, I was fully covered with insurance to maintain my recovery though the full two and a half years that I continued to progress. Not a fraction of the brain patients that I met along the way were as fortunate as I was. I was very lucky to have had such support.

The lesson learned is that recovery from a brain injury is most likely one of the hardest things that a person is ever going to experience. It takes hard work, persistence, a positive attitude, and help from people who know what you need to do to recover. The good news is that you can recover, and the better news is that the worst day of your brain injury was the first day. Everything gets better if you put in the effort. It is all up to you to continue working.

~Karl Heller, BIND Board of Directors and Member

 

Pizza With A Purpose: August 11th

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CPK single flyerCalifornia Pizza Kitchen will donate 20% of your bill to the Brain Injury Network of Dallas for all dine-in and carry-out orders ALL DAY on August 11th! This gracious offer is extended by the CPK location at Willow Bend Mall in Plano.  Remember that you must present the flyer!

Current and prospective BIND members will meet at this location at 1:00 on August 11th for a social – all are welcome to join us!  RSVP to members@thebind.org and we’ll do our best to reserve plenty of tables!

Our Very Own “Papa Smurf”

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I had a stroke. After weeks in intensive care and an additional 5-weeks of inpatient therapy and recovery time, I was it released home and began the Day Neuro Program. I didn’t know what was getting in to.   Rehabilitation was a dog. Comeback wasn’t easy. Like many stroke survivors, I needed physical, speech, cognitive, and occupational therapy.   After months of hard work, it didn’t seem that I was making progress. In additional to physical and mental challenges I was still working to overcome, I struggled with depression and self doubts.

During the time I spent with recovery, I had more than my struggles. I had to try to keep my sanity. Every time I seemed to make progress, I would take one step back. It was frustrating. I started to make progress by taking it one step at a time. Going to therapy was sometimes more than I could handle. But I always came back. Believe it or not, it got easier. I am glad I came back each time. I still have trouble getting around and my right arm doesn’t work the way it should. I’m worried that I’m working hard but it’s still not where I would like it to be. My speech is getting better but I get frustrated when I can’t communicate what I want to say. BUT, I KNOW I CAN MAKE IT!

Keep my wife Marge in your prayers, because hers is a tough job-but one she does with love in her heart and a smile on her face!

~Horace, aka Papa Smurf

 

Life As A Cowboy

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My name is Kevin McIntyre. I go by Cowboy. I am the one who wears the Cowboy hat at BIND. I will tell you how life was before, during, and after my Brain Injury.

My life before by Brain Injury was a very exciting to me. I am a Retired 4 Time National Champion Professional Bull rider from PRCA. Some people say that I was already Brain Injured just for getting on the Bulls. I have been thrown, stepped on, gored, and had many broken bones, and concussions. During my time riding, I lost the feeling in my right leg. I went to the Circuit Doctor asking him why I was dragging my right leg, he told me it was ok because people get them and it is called a dead leg. I figure since he was a MD., he knew what talking about. The last Bull I was on snapped my back while I was in chute. I knew then I needed to retire before I was dead.

On April 24, 2011, I just proposed to my wife that morning, and had to head up to the hospital to visit my dad before he passed away. On my way home, I ran into a tree head on because I could not get my Right foot off the gas pedal due to NO feeling in that leg. On my way to the hospital, I died 3 different times. When I got to Medical Center of Plano, they noticed that my face bones had been crushed. It took 3 plastic surgeons 12 hours to put me back together. They also told me that I had a TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury). I don’t know what a TBI was. I didn’t understand why I couldn’t think right.

After a month of Hospital time and Rehabs, working with many therapist, I am getting better. One of my Speech Therapist at Select Rehab (Peggy) introduced me to Valerie Gotcher. Valerie introduced me to BIND (Brain Injury Network of Dallas), and to Karl Heller (who is my Peer Partner Mentor). I have been with BIND since 2011. I have profited by BIND, not by money (which we don’t get paid), but by the satisfaction of helping other people with Brain Injuries. I am the Project Manager of Outreach and Advocacy Group. We go out and speak at Rehabs, Hospitals, Universities (Colleges), Support Groups, and Churches. We are also pairing people up with Mentors for the Survivor, and for the Caregivers.

So if you have any questions about your Brain Injury, or want to know more about BIND. Call, visit, or email us at 972-769-BIND (2463), 1408 Gables Court Suite 2 Plano, Texas 75075, www.thebind.org.

Happy Hour Brew on Tap to Benefit BIND!

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Join us for Happy Hour at BrainDead Brewing in Dallas – Friday, June 3rd from 4 to 7 pm (or anytime you want!!!).

http://braindeadbrewing.com

https://www.facebook.com/events/1167466229952059/

Don’t let the name “Arrogant Bastard” for this special Ale mislead you. This brew is quite the opposite – traveling the globe to selected brew houses like Brain Dead in Dallas – and sending all proceeds to a lucky non-profit like BIND. Every glass sold gives BIND $2. And if you can’t make it for Happy Hour on June 3rd, don’t worry, visit BrainDead throughout June and ask for Arrogant Bastard on tap. There will be plenty to go around. #bastardhitstheroad #BrainDeadBrewing

#ICYMI Open House At-a-Glance

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With gracious thanks to our supporters who made it to the Open House on May 4th this year.  Your donations of cash, gift cards, and program supplies are sincerely appreciated!

Although Open House is behind us, we are always in need of support from our community members.  With your help, our program makes a huge impact on the lives of brain injury survivors.  There is nothing that compares to having a sense of belonging, purpose, and control over your own life.  BIND gives all of that, and more, to our Members every week.  Please make a donation today so that we can continue this good work, and expand to serve all of those who are on our waiting list.  Simply put, we can’t expand our program and reach those who need us without your financial support.  Thank you.

Check it out on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_M63O1I06Ks

Understanding Post-Stroke Depression by Dr. Beck

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May seems to be a very important “awareness” month in the United States, as it is both “Mental Health Awareness Month,” and “Stroke Awareness Month.” So in thinking about how these two important issues relate, it seems appropriate for me to mention a very common condition experienced by thousands of stroke survivors each year- Post-Stroke Depression (PSD). Estimates of prevalence, or how common, PSD is among survivors vary, but is generally found to be as many as 1/3 to 2/3 stroke survivors experience PSD at some point following stroke. Causes of PSD are not completely known, though hypotheses include the possibility of neurochemical alterations/changes in the brain (e.g. changes in levels of key chemicals such as serotonin or norepinephrine) that occur after stroke, as well as more “situational” issues such as adjusting to significant physical limitations or loss of independence. In reality, PSD probably occurs as a combination of neurochemical changes in the brain as well as psychological adjustment to loss.

So why is it so important to screen for PSD, and for stroke survivors and their families to be aware of this condition? When PSD is left untreated, it not only adversely impacts the stroke survivor’s quality of life, but it can actually delay meaningful improvements in function and progress through rehabilitation efforts!

The good news is that PSD is a very treatable condition. Generally speaking, antidepressant medications are the first-line of treatment for PSD. In my own clinical experience, survivors may not need medication for an extended period of time, but it can be very helpful to “get over the hump” initially. Antidepressants help to increase and stabilize certain chemicals in the brain believed to be related to mood. Additional treatments may include individual psychotherapy/counseling, particularly if depressive symptoms appear to be more related to adjustment to disability/loss. Other effective treatments may include increasing involvement in enjoyable activities (hobbies/interests) and improving social support.

The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s website has a lot of great information, including many inspirational stories told by stroke survivors. Sometimes the most powerful “treatment” for PSD may actually be the instillation of hope for the future- no matter the degree of disability. And there is nothing like hearing another stroke survivor tell his or her story.

BIND also works to improve the lives of individuals living with the effects of stroke through programs such as Peer Partners, a mentoring program provided by stroke survivors/caregivers for stroke survivors/caregivers. Feel free to explore our website for more information on our programs.

And if you or your loved one is living with PSD, I encourage you to get connected- explore area stroke support groups, talk to your doctor about treatment options, get involved with the AHA/ASA, or reach out to BIND!

~Dr. Kelley D. Beck, Board President