ABBOTSFORD – The Fraser Valley Brain Injury Association (FVBIA) is receiving $101,119 in funding to enhance and expand three programs to support people with acquired brain injuries. The FVBIA provides services throughout the Fraser Valley in Abbotsford, Langley, Chilliwack, Mission and Hope.

The FVBIA will be able to expand its Pay It Forward program into Langley and Mission which focuses on a variety of health and wellness programs for those with an acquired brain injury. As well, the FVBIA will expand its prevention and awareness programs to reach a wider audience is now able to buy new helmets for the bike safety program in Chilliwack. Additionally, the organization will be able to develop a one-on-one life skills program to support people improve their independence.

“Funding for community-based associations has been critically short for years and sometimes the local brain injury groups are the only supports people with acquired brain injuries have,” FVBIA executive director Carol Paetkau said. “Thank you to the Government of British Columbia for recognizing the value of community-based services for this population.”

“The expansion of the programs being offered will make a huge difference in our community,” Abbotsford South MLA Darryl Plecas said. “A brain injury can happen at any moment and change a life forever. This investment will touch many lives.”

“I’m happy to hear that thanks to this funding, the Fraser Valley Brain Injury Association will be able to provide new programs throughout the region,” Abbotsford West MLA Michael de Jong said. “The hard work they continue to do will improve the lives of those impacted by a brain injury.”

In May, the government provided $3 million in funding over three years to the Brain Injury Alliance which has distributed funding to organizations in two stages. In the first stage, $10,000 was provided to each of B.C.’s 16 community-based, non-profit brain-injury service providers to help with operational costs.

In the second stage, brain-injury organizations in B.C. receive funding based on applications for programs specific to their needs. These organizations run programs and services to help reduce the incidence of injury or directly help those affected by brain injuries.