Tom's story

Since Yarrow started working with Tom, he has rediscovered his outgoing personality and confidence and he now manages his finances with ease and frequently visits cinemas, art galleries, the local college and, of course, friends.  

When he had an accident that resulted in a brain injury, Tom became depressed and introverted. Everyday activities like budgeting challenged him and at times, he felt so frustrated that he became verbally abusive. 

Today, he genuinely enjoys the company of others and socialising regularly as he did, when he was an actor, before his accident.

Sue's story

Sue is currently working on a book of poems that have proved an excellent outlet for her thoughts and feelings and which she says help reduce her anxieties. In the past, Sue relied wholly on medication to manage her anxiety.

Sue wanted to move from the parental home into a supported living scheme, so she worked with Yarrow to make the transition – a transition that included gaining skills in areas such as paying bills, navigating London transport and managing her moods. When Sue made the move, it wasn’t without problems – the increased periods of isolation affected her anxiety, but together with her support staff, she is finding ways to deal with it and is enjoying her newfound independence. Sue no longer needs medication.

Max's story

Max enjoys visiting the Tate Modern, as well as going to the cinema, theatre and Latin music clubs. He loves a good game of wheelchair basketball too, and seeing Chelsea play football.

In many ways, this is hardly surprising. Max was a keen sportsman and ran his own business.  But after his brain injury, which resulted in paralysis down one side, he had to move to ground floor accommodation and his wife had to give up a good job to care for him. He was not able to get out and his confidence and humour hit an all-time low.  Yarrow worked in a gentle, unhurried way with Max and his wife, to identify his interests and goals, so he could maximise social and community activities.  Max now initiates communication, looks forward to his activities and spends a lot of time laughing.

Ryan's story

Ryan’s brain injury meant he struggled to find any suitable activities to fill his days.  So he worked with Yarrow to identify his interests and to help him introduce these back into his daily life – interests such as using computers, going to the gym, swimming, walking and listening to music.  Ryan’s confidence in using public transport is also growing, encouraged by support staff as a means of helping him regain control and independence in his life

Ryan has found the visual prompts introduced by Yarrow to be particularly useful.  These prompts remind him to do things like take his keys with him when he goes out or to check the time. He is also working with Yarrow to regain his understanding of time and timekeeping because he has sometimes arrived at his daughter’s home at 6.30 in the morning, thinking it was dinner time. For Ryan’s family, who were under great stress following his brain injury, the three afternoons a week that Yarrow works with Ryan have literally been life-changing.