Brain injury clinic hosts annual gala event

Sports injuries, greater awareness of concussions has lead to waitlist for patients

After successful community outreach efforts, the Victoria Brain Injury Society has, in a way, become a victim of its own success.

Its numbers are growing, which is great, said the society’s board president Stephen McKenzie.

But there is a downside: a growing wait list for the organization’s support services.

“When somebody has the guts to come in, it has taken a lot of courage,” he said. “We can’t just put them on the wait list. They should be met with open, welcome arms.”

The society’s two case workers see 700 clients a year and the wait list has 22 names on it.

Demand is up for two main reasons, said McKenzie. First, media attention about brain injuries has caused coaches and doctors to deal with blows to the head differently than in past.

Also, people in their 40s and 50s are starting to think about the long-term effects of concussions they received playing sports in the past.

The other reason for the surge in clients is the society’s push to get its name out.

Tomorrow (Nov. 17) the society hosts its annual Black and White gala fundraiser. The organization hopes to raise enough to help meet the growing demand for its free services.

Tickets are $150 and include gourmet food, champagne and music by classical/pop quartet Destino. The event takes place at 6:30 p.m. at the Victoria Marriott Inner Harbour, 728 Humboldt St.

To buy tickets or offer sponsorship, call 250-598-9339 or send an email to admin@vbis.ca. For other information, visit becausegreymatters.com.

rholmen@vicnews.com

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