Our own news from Headway East Northants.


Former manager, Jean Tudor, returns to HEN as a volunteer!



Everyone at Headway East Northants is absolutely delighted to welcome back former manager, Jean Tudor, who has become our newest volunteer! 


Jean, who retired back in May of 2018, joins us this January to lead our Tuesday morning cookery sessions. Clients, staff and fellow volunteers are thrilled to have Jean back at the centre, and her first cookery session with the gang was a fun and production morning, as you can see from the photos above, with clients supported and engaged throughout. Great to have you back, Jean! 


Client Christmas lunch goes with a swing at Stanwick Lakes



Both clients and staff alike had a superb time at our annual Christmas lunch on Tuesday the 11th. We all enjoyed a relaxed two-course lunch together as well as a great laugh too.


We'd like to extend our sincere thanks to Irthlingborough town councillor, Sylvia Hobbs, for her very kind donation towards the event, as well as Jo Bird and the catering team at Stanwick Lakes, for making us feel so welcome. 



Our biggest Christmas coffee morning yet!



What an incredible coffee morning we enjoyed on the 29th November! We were thrilled to welcome so many friendly faces to our centre, ranging from staff, clients and volunteers through to families, carers, community supporters and Irthlingborough residents! 


Our wonderful volunteers worked so hard making delicious cakes and treats, manning the hot drinks stand, making up hampers and running the raffle to name but a few things! We had some wonderful raffle prizes this year thanks to our friends at Morrisons and Tesco, whose goodies enabled us to put together some stunning hampers, perfect for Christmas. 


We're still totting up final proceeds but it looks like we've made around £400 for our centre, all of which will be used to enrich and support the lives of those with ABI. Enormous thanks to all involved! 



HEN bids a sad farewell to volunteer, Paula Davies 

Our coffee morning gave us the chance to say farewell to our amazing volunteer, Paula Davies, who has dedicated over 20 years volunteering at our centre and is now moving on to pastures new.


Paula has supported so many people over those years and been such a key member of the HEN team. From helping organise and attending countless events, driving the old minibus, trips out and even thinking nothing of putting together a daily two-course lunch for twenty people, Paula has quite simply always been here for each and every one of us and she will be dreadfully missed.



Paula - "thank you" hardly seems to cover it, but the difference you have made to so many lives has been immense.Thank you for showing us that there are people like you in the world.




Volunteer Wilson and client Tim join the Headway East Northants Board of Trustees! 



We're absolutely delighted to announce Wilson Paterson and Tim Samples as new Trustees of the Board of Headway East Northants.


Tim is a client who attends our Irthlingborough centre, and Wilson is one of our volunteers who also has a loved one with acquired brain injury. Together, Wilson and Tim lead our weekly Peer Support Group. 


We felt that their combined personal experience of dealing with acquired brain injury makes them excellent representatives of our client, volunteer and family groups involved with HEN, and we're delighed that they've accepted our invitations.


Both Wilson and Tim bring valuable input to the Board and we're very proud indeed to welcome them as trustees.



Volunteer Dave kicks off the festive spirit begins with his rocking reindeers! 



Volunteer Dave has kicked off the season in style, with his gorgeous handmade reindeer, all of which sold out at our coffee morning, so Dave will be busy back in our workshop putting together some more, such is demand! 


Each reindeer is unique and handcrafted from all natural materials. Here's Dave above (far right) picture with two of our clients (and a whole herd behind them, all of which have found new homes for Christmas already!).



A great afternoon at the Irthlingborough Christmas Fest! 



A huge thank you to all who supported us at the Irthlingborough Christmas Fest back on December 1st!  


Our lovely volunteer Carol, alongside husband Paul and fellow volunteer, Dave, manned our stall which featured festive treats, homemade cakes and bakes, handcrafted items and of course our ever popular children's tombola.


Another terrific example of the fantastic volunteer support we have, and of course a lovely opportunity to showcase Headway East Northants to the local community. Enormous thanks to all involved. 



Claire, Becky and Kate talk "all things Headway" at Christmas charity awareness night, Waitrose Rushden 



Claire, Becky and Kate were pleased to attend the Christmas charity awareness event on the evening of 5th December, held at Rushden's Waitrose store.


The event, organised between Waitrose and Northamptonshire Carers, offered us a great platform to talk about who we are and what we do here at Headway East Northants and we met some lovely people including carers, brain injury survivors and fellow local charities, to share our stories.  


We were delighted to take part in raising further awareness of Headway East Northants, and thank both Waitrose and Northamptonshire Carers for the opportunity to attend. 


Headway musicians rock the fundraising concert!




We had an amazing night on Saturday 6th October, supporting the Raunds Ukulele Orchestra, 'A Different Direction' choir and friends at a fundraising concert in Rushden, dedicated to raising money for both Headway East Northants and the Cransley Hospice.


We were also bursting with pride to see some of our clients performing as the 'Custard Caterpillars', Headway East Northants' music group. Playing not only ukuleles, glockenspiels and drums, but singing live too, the guys performed the Sam Smith hit, 'Stay With Me' and had the audience tapping its feet to 'Bad Moon Rising' by Credence Clearwater Revival.


Our facilitator Freyja and partner Chris not only performed themselves, but also dedicated a huge amount of time and hard work to organising and hosting a really professional gig. Our deputy manager Jonny Tudor also took to the stage for a solo performance, both singing and playing the guitar.


It was inspiring to see our wonderful clients conquer their nerves and perform live to a packed-out hall - amazing examples of what a brain injury survivor can achieve.


The gig was also generously supplied with drinks and cake, with both a raffle and competition to win an incredible Australian-themed gift hamper, filled with goodies from Down Under, so generously and thoughtfully put together by our volunteer, Broch.


Having totted-up the final figures, we're thrilled to share that an amazing £405 EACH was raised on the night for both Headway East Northants and the Cransley Hospice. A huge thank you to all who came to support the night!




Proving we're "fun-guys" during our Mushrooms & Funghi theme day!




As autumn is well underway, our facilitators organised a 'Mushroom & Funghi' theme day for our clients.

First we did a bit of research together about the many different species out there, then carried out some photo identification.


Next, clients and volunteers ventured out into the "great Irthlingborough outdoors" for a foraging session, gathering suitable materials to create 'woodland houses' (with a few fairies from the art department thrown in for good luck!).


Of course, what else would be on the menu for lunch that day than mushroom risotto?!


A terrific day for everyone, working together and using creativity, forward-planning and concentration. 






Spook-tacular pumpkin carving this Halloween! 




Our clients had a terrific time creating their own pumpkin designs and bringing them to life for Halloween! There were some really creative ideas and some great forward-planning. Some even had teeth, fake blood and googly eyes! 


The pumpkins are currently on guard in the games room. A great activity enjoyed by all - and sincere thanks to our friends at Wellingborough's Tesco store for the donation of the pumpkins! 



Headway East Northants AGM a great success!


We were delighted to host our well-supported AGM in September. We hosted a total of 28 guests, ranging from trustees, staff and volunteers, through to clients, families, supporters and town council representatives.


The meeting gave us the opportunity to not only reflect on activities over the past year, but also think about how we can plan ahead and take our services to the next level. We concluded with a delicious light buffet and refreshments for all attendees.


There will, of course, always be challenges ahead, but our strong, experienced team of staff and sound reputation help to provide and maintain our solid foundation.


The feedback we've received so far tells us that attendees not only found the meeting enjoyable, but also informative, with real take-home value.  Here's to another super year ahead for Headway East Northants!



HEN's Becky Lake and husband Wayne raise almost £300 running the Stanwick Lakes Autumn Run!



Our Admin & Fundraising Coordinator, Becky Lake, participated in the Autumn Run in the Autumn Run at nearby Stanwick Lakes back in September, along with her husband Wayne, to raise funds for Headway East Northants! 


Becky successfully completed the 5k course while Wayne completed the 10k! 


Thanks to generous donations, Becky and Wayne managed to raise almost £300 for our Irthlingborough Centre, to continue the services and support provided to our wonderful clients and their families.  


Becky says: "I only joined the team in May, but couldn't feel luckier to work with such a fantastic group of people, who really do make such a difference to the lives of our clients. It definitely made the highly dodgy leggings worth it!"


A huge thank you to all who kindly donated!





A great time had by all at the Headway East Northants barbecue!



We had a wonderful time at our annual barbecue back in June!


We were lucky enough to have some extremely generous donations of food, drinks and sundries from our friends at both Tesco and Morrisons. Our clients enjoyed a beautiful range of barbecued goodies, from burgers to sausages (complete with all the trimmings!) through to plenty of of cold drinks to keep us all cool on what was a very hot day.


The generosity of these donations helped  provide a wonderful day together for clients, carers, staff and volunteers. Enormous thanks also to our super volunteer, Joan Simpson, who opened up her home and garden and hosted everyone. 


We think the smiles on our clients' faces say it all.





Latest News

London Marathon Information Evening, 11th February


Now that our marathon team is full (27 runners in total!), we're really excited to host our annual London Marathon Information Evening on Monday 11th February, to which all 'Team HEN' runners are invited! 


The informal evening, held at our Irthlingborough centre, offers the chance for runners to take a look around our centre, meet fellow participants, and of course a great opportunity for us to meet these amazing people in person! 


Guest speaker this year is Andrew Walker, himself an experienced London Marathon runner, and a member of Team HEN 2019. Andrew will be there to share his knowledge and experiences, and to offer hints/tips about build-up to race day, nutrition, lasting the distance, and of course, recovery.


7.00pm start with an anticipated finishing time of 8.30pm. All RSVP's and vest top size confirmations by Monday 21st January, please.



Fish & Chip quiz night, 26th January!


Our facilitator Freyja and partner Chris belong to 'A Different Direction' choir and are busy fundraising for an amazing trip to perform at New York's Carnegie Hall! 


To aid their funding, they've organised a Fish & Chip Quiz  night on Saturday 26th January at Saxon Hall, Raunds, with all proceeds going towards their event. You may remember the choir from the incredible performance they gave alongside the Headway musicians, 'The Custard Caterpillars' back in October!


Great night guaranteed - for full details, please visit our 'Events' page. 


New Year, New You? Come and be a volunteer!


Want to make a positive change for 2019? Then come and be part of our amazing team of volunteers!


Whether you have a spare day in the week, or even just an hour or two, visit our centre and meet our fantastic people. We have so much to offer those who've survived brain injury - maybe it could be YOU who helps someone re-learn a lost skill, or take on a new one.


For all volunteering enquiries, please call on 01933 652311 or email our deputy manager, Jonny Tudor, on  jonny.tudor@headwayeastnorthants.org.uk