Member of Kanata 5 tragedy launching BrainSTRONG charity to raise awareness of brain injuries
A local man is on a mission to raise awareness about the challenges faced by those who suffer from Acquired Brain Injury (ABI).
Robert Wein was one of the "Kanata Five", a group of five cyclists who were struck by a driver on March Road in 2009. The crash left him with a severe brain injury and changed his life forever.
Despite his challenges, Wein has not let his injury define him. He has launched a new charity, BrainSTRONG, to help others who are struggling with the effects of ABI. The charity aims to bring awareness to the invisible nature of brain injuries and the need for support from the community and the health-care system.
"BrainSTRONG is a way to tell the world that if you happen to have a brain injury, they may not be aware of it. It's invisible, so no one can see it," says Wein.
Pathways to Independence, a local organization that provides support to those with ABI, agrees with Wein's message. Christie Swann, the COO of Pathways to Independence, says that people often don't understand the impact of brain injury on a person's life.
"Often, for most people, you're living a quote-unquote 'normal life', and then something happens tragically, and your life is never the same. People around you often don't understand the impact that it has. By increasing our funding and awareness, we're just getting the word out there and that can help in every way," says Swann.
In June, Wein hopes to hold another Brain Injury Awareness Walk, which he has organized since his recovery. He wants to spread the message of understanding and support for those who suffer from brain injuries.
"I'm hoping to tell the world that if someone makes a mistake, don't get mad. Just say why. Ask why," says Wein.
BrainSTRONG will be officially launched this Friday with a trivia night event in Richmond. The launch is expected to bring together members of the community to support Wein's mission and raise awareness about brain injury.
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