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Services & Resources on this site reflect the
best practices in the field of Traumatic Brain Injury

Providing wealth of information, creative solutions and leadership on issues related to brain injury since 1985

Copyright © 1998 Head Injury Hotline

From The Ashes:
Our Brain Injury Survivor's Guide

Work Re-entry
Return to Work.  Work plays a major role in the lives of most people. Work is one important way we defineourselves. It provides a sense of accomplishment, achievement, recognition, independence and meaning to our lives. Often, persons with brain injury experience changes in behaviors, emotions and thinking that  make returning to a work environment frustrating and difficult. Application of the brain building strategies and techniques on this site can help make the return to work more efficient and productive. 

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  Re-Employment strategies.   Become intimate with the nature of  your impairments.  Understand and work within your new cycles of energy and fatigue.  Work closely with your doctor concerning medical restrictions on hours of work and workload. During your off-hours engage in activities that sharpen your mental skills, and increase your stamina, check with your doctor in this regard. 
  •  Work with your doctors and your employer to prioritize tasks, timelines, hours of work, and even location of work, i.e., telecommute.  Allow extra time for completion of  tasks, and when necessary negotiate for additional time, and /or support services. 
  • Familiarize yourself with your employer's policies on rehabilitation, re-employment and assistance for job re-entry.
  • Federal law requires that disabled workers be given reasonable accommodations concerning re-employment.
  • Educate your employer concerning the types of accommodations you need to help make your return to work efficient, and productive for all parties. 
  • Talk to your friends, family, and co-workers. Discuss the types of  support and assistance that they can offer to assist you in your return to work 
  • Help your union promote a "Return-to-Work" policy for injured workers.
  • If you are a member of a union, help them to help you. You can make a difference not only for yourself and your co-workers, but for future generations.
  • Work together and adhere to Occupational Health and Safety practices.
  • Make workplace safety foremost in the minds of your co-workers. Join with them in sticking to the practices.
Fatigue After Brain Injury.   Fatigue is one of the leading complaints of head injury patients.  It can have a substantial impact on the ability to resume normal work, school and social activities. Yet, its impact is rarely given adequate consideration. A study published in the May 2000 issue of the Journal of Neurotrauma, by M. Bergsneider, et al,  showed that a head injury can interfere with the brain's ability to uptake and process glucose and oxygen. (http://www.edc.gsph.pitt.edu/neurotrauma/index.html)

           Following a brain injury, activities that were familiar and routine may require great amounts of energy, and effort. This problem might produce a sense of overwhelming tiredness. This fatigue might directly impact work, classroom and social relations. Fatigue can undermine concentration, attention, memory and communication. 

          When returning to work or school,  after a brain injury it is difficult to know how much you should do and for how long. Taking on too much too soon can lead to demoralizing setbacks. For that reason, a successful return to work and school is usually accomplished through trial and error. A gradual return  to work or the classroom will allow for a a more successful adjustment.  In time, stamina and energy level will improve and activity level and responsibilities may be increased. 

          The course of recovery from brain injury, such as it is, is painstakingly slow.  The injured brain needs regular rest breaks. Practice good nutrition to keep your energy levels up. Regular exercise will prevent atrophy -- check with your doctors concerning exercise.  Set a cut-off time for ending daily activities. Set a regular bedtime, and stick to it. Also practice good sleep hygiene. Consider an evaluation at a sleep clinic.  Become more mindful of  energy cycles.  When extraordinary effort is required to start or engage in an activity postpone it until you feel refreshed. 

Self Employment Resources

          Funding assistance  -- state resources related to economic development, , and growing a small or home-based business. It is worthwhile to spend some time on the website(s) for your state. Many have regional funding programs listed as well as links to resources related to business development at the local, state, national, and international levels.

       Business Plan Resources --  In its most general sense, business planning is all about taking your dream and turning it into reality. A business plan is the document you create when you take an idea for a commercial endeavor and work through all the factors that will have an impact on the successful startup, operation, and management of the business. 

        CapitalQuest --specializes in raising  money for startups and dramatically reduces the time it takes to raise funding - typically under 90 days.url: http://www.vcapitalquest.com/home


Employment Resources
Article:  ADAPTED VEHICLES:  Paving the Road to Independence [MDA Quest site]  -- by by Lori Hungate -- sections: "Driver Training", "Mistakes to Avoid", "Taking the Sting out of Conversion Price", "Inside Controls", and "Resources". url: http://www.mdausa.org/publications/Quest/q41vehicle.html 
American Society of Association Executives -- url:  http://www.asaenet.org 
Americans with Disabilities Act Technical Assistance Program -- Federally funded network of grantees that provide information, training, and technical assistance to businesses and agencies with duties and responsibilities under the ADA and to people with disabilities with rights under the ADA. 
url: http://www.adata.org/ Telephone: 800-949-4232 (V/TTY)
Analytic Rehabilitation -- Vocational and rehabilitation counseling firm in Southern California1899 Mentone Blvd.  Mentone, CA  92359, Telephone: 909-794-7306; Toll free: 800-579-9546; FAX: 909-794-9216 -- email: ari@analyticrehab.com -- url: http://www.analyticrehab.com/
Assistive Technologies Alliance  -- ATRC/University of Washington -- P.O. Box 357920, Seattle, WA 98195-7920 --Telephone: 206-685-6836 (V/TTY), 800-214-8731 V/TTY.  Offers programs, electronic networking and information,  forums, and an exchange for AT devices. url:http://wata.org/
Assistive Technology Industry Association -- links and information.Telephone: 877-687-2842; 847-869-1282 - url: http://www.atia.org  (US & Canada)
Careerxroads:  Employment and career resources - url: http://www.careerxroads.com
email:  mmc@careerxroads.com
Connecting to Success -- Institute on Community Integration (UAP) University of Minnesota, Pattee Hall, 150 Pillsbury Drive SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455 -- An e-mentoring project sponsored by the the Presidental Task Force. The project sponsors mentoring through technology to assist youth with disabilities to achieve more meaningful and positive post-school outcomes. Telephone: 612-625-7519; Fax: 612-624-9344 - email: ementoring@icimail.coled.umn.edu
Disability Direct --One stop shopping - Federal disability services and resources.  url: http://disAbility.gov/
Disability Information for Students -- That is, students studying to become professionals assisting people with disabilities. Links include job listings. url: http://www.abilityinfo.com/
Employer Assistance Referral Network (EARN) -- Established March 2001 EARN operates a national toll-free telephone and electronic information referral service, and is designed to assist employers in locating and recruiting qualified workers with disabilities. EARN, is a service of the Office of Disability Employment Policy, also provides technical assistance on general disability employment-related issues. Telephone: 866- 327-6669 -- 
url: http://www.earnworks.com 
Funding assistance  -- state resources related to economic development, , and growing a small or home-based business. It is worthwhile to spend some time on the website(s) for your state. Many have regional funding programs listed as well as links to resources related to business development at the local, state, national, and international levels. 
Job Accommodation Network -- W. Virginia University, PO Box 6080 Morgantown, WV 26506-6080.  JAN is a service of the U.S. DOL Office of Disability Employment Policy.  JAN is a toll-free consulting service that provides information about job accommodations, self-employment and small business ownership opportunities for people with disabilities. JAN also provides information regarding the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
Telephone: 800-526-7234 (V/TTY) -- url: http://www.jan.wvu.edu/
Hotjobs.com:  Employment and career resources. - url:  http://www.hotjobs.com
JobsOnline:   Employment and career resources site.  Job Seekers can post resumes to a database that contains over 200,000 current job postings, review salary information and take a job aptitude test.
url:  http://www.jobsonline.com
Job opportunities:  Are you looking for work? Do you want to submit your résumé to IBM? Search  job listings and submit your résumé online.  url:   http://www.ibm.com/employment/ 
Jobs & Training  - King County  - url: http://www.kingcounty.gov/courts/detention/jobs.aspx
Job Seeking Skills for People with Disabilities: A Guide to Success
A handbook for service providers to use as a counseling tool, or for individuals with disabilities to use on their own. Provides an overview of the career planning process, including considerations for the applicant with a disability.url: http://www.csun.edu/~sp20558/dis/sh.html
Mobility Jobline -- community on the web for disability news, resources and culture.
url: http://www.newmobility.com
National Business Incubation Association -- 20 E. Circle Drive, Ste 190 Athens, OH 45701-3571-- Clearinghouse on the business incubation industry. Incubators nurture young firms, helping them to survive and grow during the startup period when they are most vulnerable. Telephone: 740-593 4331  Fax: 740- 593-1996; url: http://www.nbia.org/; email: info@nbia.org. 
Project Hired - Anon-profit organization working to make Silicon Valley workplaces fully inclusive of people with disabilities!  url: http://www.projecthired.org/
Small Business Administration (SBA) and Related Resources -- 
url: http://www.jan.wvu.edu/SBSES/RESOURCES.HTM
Small Business Resources -Federal Government  -- 
url: http://www.jan.wvu.edu/SBSES/FEDERAL%20GOVERNMENT%20SB%20RESOURCES.htm
State Vocational Rehabilitation Offices --url:  http://www.jan.wvu.edu/SBSES/VOCREHAB.HTM
VETS - Veterans - url: http://www.dol.gov/dol/vets/
Workers with Disabilities Project - Assist chronically ill, injured and disabled employment candidates and established workers to achieve viable, reasonable accommodation through a new approach. 
url: http://www.wwdp.org -- email: Duane@wwdp.org -- Canada

Resources for Workers Injured on the Job
Canadian Injured Workers Alliance  -- Information and resources for injured workers in Canada and beyond -- url: http://www.ciwa.ca/eng/index.htm - e-mail: ciwa@norlink.net
DAWN: DisAbled Women's Network  (Canada) - url: http://indie.ca/dawn
FEDUP FEDS  -- Self-help resource for on-the-job injuries, claims, red tape, and related medical and legal concerns in U.S. federal employment -- url:  http://fedupfeds.org
Injured Workers' Coalition of New York State  -- Information and resources for injured workers in New York State. url:  http://www.net1plus.com/users/weurgeu/iwc.html
email: :information@NYSinjuredworkers.org
Injured Workers on Line:  Links to information and resources. 
url:  http://www.injuredworkers.org/
Injured Worker's Organizing Project (Oregon, U.S.) - url:   http://www.aracnet.com/~woc

American Association of Home Based Businesses -- url:  http://www.aahbb.org 
The Canadian Telework Association -- url:  http://www.ivc.ca
Distant Drum-Telecommuting Resources on the Internet -- url:  http://www.escapeartist.com/tele/commute.htm
The International Telework Association and Council -- url:  http://www.telecommute.org
Telecommuting for Persons with Disabilities -- url:  http://www.muskie.usm.maine.edu/research/disability/telepg2.html
Telecommuting Jobs -- url: http://www.tjobs.com
The Telework, Telecottage and Telecentre Association -- url:  http://www.tca.org.uk
US Office of Personnel Management: Telecommuting -- url:   http://www.opm.gov/wrkfam/telecomm/telecomm.htm
The US Small Business Administration Online -- url:  http://www.sbaonline.sba.gov/

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