Sharing a post on social media on Sunday, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said he gave his heartfelt thanks to Emilia and Jenny Clarke after SameYou joined the WHO’s World Rehabilitation Alliance.
Tedros also shared a video that Emilia recorded for the launch of the Alliance, which outlines how vital rehabilitation is for millions of brain injury survivors around the world - but many are unable to access it.
Jenny, CEO and co-founder of SameYou, told delegates at the WHO’s Global Rehabilitation meeting that brain injury survivors must come together with one voice to radically improve rehabilitation around the world.
Speaking at the event in Geneva on July 11, Jenny outlined the power of advocacy and said survivors are the ‘people who really matter’. She said it’s important to highlight their needs, including vital mental health support, from their own lived experience to support advocacy towards policy makers.
Jenny spoke about the urgent need for information for survivors to make the best recovery possible, understanding from clinicians to understand conditions and the hidden symptoms of brain injury, and empathy and social awareness from the public.
Jenny said: “We are focused on trying to make aware the need for rehabilitation, particularly in young adults after an acquired brain injury. So what does awareness mean? It doesn't mean very much unless you put action to it. And so what we see is really, really important is to allow people who have experienced brain injury to be able to tell their stories and to see where that leads us.”
Jenny told the meeting about her daughter Emilia surviving two brain haemorrhages and co-founding SameYou which led to thousands of survivors getting in contact to share their stories – and revealing that access to rehabilitation is seriously inadequate.