Check out the Our BEST Space flyer! Feel free to download, forward and/or share. Better, stop by for a visit this summer. We’d love to see you! 💚
(NEW) Lunch and Learn Series Summer 2019: Short 50-minute presentations chock full of information, tips, and tricks you can use at Our BEST Space in University Place, Washington. The presentations will be facilitated by BEST Executive Director, Gloria Kraegel.
Bring your lunch and let the learning begin.
There is no charge to attend. All are welcome!
The Summer 2019 Lunch and Learn series kicks off June 11, 2019 from 1 pm to 2 pm, with the presentation, Discovering Your Inner Entrepreneur.
Our BEST Space is located at 2607 Bridgeport Way W, Suite 1H , University Place. For directions, click here.
Ah, for the love of lavender! 💜
This sweet-smelling, vibrantly colored plant is not only beautiful, but it chock full of health benefits.
Here are some interesting facts about lavender.
Did you know:
To learn more about lavender and health, click here.
To find out more about lavender essential oil, click here.
For those in the Pacific Northwest, lavender festivals and celebrations and more:
For a lavender growing guide, click here.
Interested in making your own lavender oil? Check this out.
Brain health and wellness goes hand in hand with mental health.
May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Here are just a few of the facts about mental health:
Studies have shown that people with traumatic brain injuries are four times more likely to have mental health challenges.
Here are just a few links to start to learn more about mental health:
The Brain Energy Support Team (BEST) will continue to share additional resources, tools and information throughout the month.
The Brain Energy Support Team (BEST) was honored to participate in the 2019 Saying It Out Loud all-day conference at the Greater Tacoma Convention Center on April 29, 2019 in Tacoma, Washington. The conference, now in it’s 18th year, was hosted by the Department of Social and Health Services’ (DSHS) Behavioral Health Administration’s (BHA) Division of Behavioral Health and Recovery (DBHR) educates participants on how to better serve lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer and questioning plus communities.
The theme of conference was Beyond the Binary and focused on behavioral health.
BEST had the opportunity to share information, resources and great conversation about brain health and wellness, brain injury awareness, support, resources and more with many community members throughout the day.
Along with the beautiful spring sunshine streaming through the convention center windows, there was a spirit of care, support, and learning that was just as warm and lovely as the sun.
Thank you, Saying It Out Loud for the BEST day!
In case you missed it, BEST shared recaps and a video for both days of the 2019 Washington State TBI Conference in Spokane, Washington on April 15th and 16th. The recaps provide additional informational links and the video shares our virtual photo album of the event. As a social media bonus, we did a video from the road on the way back west showcasing the beauty of the state.
For the recap of day one (April 15th), click here.
For the recap of day two (April 16th), click here.
For the videos, see below.
The 2019 Washington State TBI Conference has come to a conclusion. What a terrific experience it was!
First, we felt a warm welcome to city of Spokane. Thank you for being a super city!
Second, the day kicked off with some morning greetings, door prizes and fun, which then launched into an important morning session with Dr. Todd Wylie on vision therapy and brain injury.
Dr. Wylie expressed the science, symptoms, strategies, treatments and tips on vision therapy and vision issues. It was an interesting discussion with a question and answer session. Read all about Dr. Wylie’s story, here.
Participants were able to take a break, visit and explore the exhibits continued from day one of the conference. Morning breakout sessions after the break included advice and support, assistive technology, brain injury in the corrections system, domestic violence, how to start and maintain a brain injury support group, yoga, art, and massage.
Lunch was shared with important conversation around the parties receiving final approval for settlement to reform Washington’s forensic mental health system (Trueblood Lawsuit Settlement). Read about this critical work, here.
The collective group of conference goers shared a warm tribute to the late Tommy Manning, Washington State brain injury advocate, activist, and supporter. As a survivor himself, he made an enormous impact on the support of other survivors. Learn all about Tommy’s story in a tribute from BEST Executive Director, Gloria Kraegel.
Former legislator, Dennis Flannigan , advocate Darci Ladwig, and Dianella Clark, of the Washington State Traumatic Brain Injury Council and a brain injury survivor and advocate, gave a rousing, hopeful and inspirational group panel on advocacy and activism.
The advice given by all three? Here is the common thread:
After this inspirational session, conference participants had other fantastic offerings of eight different work shops, from sports concussions, screening for TBIs, yoga and more.
Of course, there was more visiting, new friends, old friends, and warm embraces.
Thank you superheroes, for an amazing conference experience.
Please enjoy this video of our favorite pictures.
The 2019 Washington State TBI Conference in Spokane, Washington April 15-16, 2019, is a wrap!
Here are some of our favorite pictures in video to mark the event. We will be sharing additional recaps and more soon. Stay tuned!
Many thanks to the real-life superheroes of the brain injury community. You are truly the BEST!
The first afternoon of the 2019 Washington State TBI Conference in Spokane, Washington, was a wonderful combination of sharing, caring, important conversations, resources, and information.
The exhibit hall was the site of participant registration and a variety of exhibitors who shared a wide variety of resources. Organizations included the Brain Energy Support Team (BEST), HeadStrong, Northwest Brain Injury Symposium, TBI Council/Alta, Disability Rights Washington, Spokane Veteran’s Center, Employment Security Office, Wallingford Support Group, St. Luke’s Rehab Institute, Disability Action Center, Brain Injury Alliance of Washington, Brain Injury Alliance of Spokane, the Aging and Long Term Care of Washington, and the Department of Veterans Affairs.
The keynote speaker to kick off the conference was Dr. Cheryle Sullivan and her presentation, “Resilience and Advocacy–The Journey Together.” Dr. Sullivan shared her journey in three parts: as a doctor, a caregiver for multiple family members with brain injury and brain-related medical conditions, and finally as a brain injury survivor herself.
Dr. Sullivan endured six traumatic brain injuries over her lifetime, with the most challenging impact with a ski accident in 2002.
The physician was met becoming a patient, along with a loss of independence, struggles at work, memory issues, mental health and emotional struggles and more.
Navigating the medical system was not easy.
Over time, Dr. Sullivan was able to met the right medical team, specialists, therapies and support groups after enduring so much for so long.
Her message was that of not giving up, to keep going, and finding emotional support, a critical part of the recovery process. Over her journey, she became more hopeful, inspired and a thirst for learning more.
Dr. Sullivan is the author of “The Brain Injury Survival Kit” and a contributor to “Chicken Soup for the Soul: Recovering from Traumatic Brain Injuries: 101 Stories of Hope, Healing and Hard Work.” She is also a presenter and speaker.
After the keynote speaker, breakout sessions occurred covering various topics such as art as therapy, TBI 101, how to transition to independence and suicide prevention.
For one of the breakout sessions, BEST Executive Director Gloria Kraegel and Stacy Chay, LICSWA, MHP from Eastern Washington University, gave a joint presentation on suicide prevention.
Both Kraegel and Shay presented powerful conversation, statistics, information about stigmas about suicide, strategies and a wealth of resources on traumatic brain injury, suicide and suicide prevention.
In the coming days on the BEST website blog, we will be sharing additional, in-depth information on this critical topic in a separate post.
After the break sessions, conference participants had the opportunity to ask questions, mingle and visit with others.
Looking forward to tomorrow’s experience! Thank you to all of the participants that made this first day special.