Headshot of Karen Haworth

Karen Haworth

Karen Haworth says “When I started Brain Health Breakthrough, I originally started working with those who have brain injury experience. We are now expanding to help a wider range of client groups and we are finding that the work we do is effective amongst those who have previous trauma and mental health issues.

Brain Health Breakthrough’s vision and overall mission is to be able to work with clients and individuals who may have previously accessed other services but still feel like they need additional guidance. To be able to offer this within a model so our services are accessible to those that most need them.

It’s our mission to have the correct approach to allow individuals to feel safe to work with us to overcome whatever is holding them back and thus creating a ripple effect throughout their families and communities. The use of simple tools and techniques that clients can use for a lifetime.”


Our 2020 Igniting Inspiration Campaign is proudly sponsored by

Who have you helped/who will you help?

“We have recently been able to offer free coaching, workshops, and access to powerful audios to unpaid carers and those with brain injury experience through awards for all. I have also been able to offer a low-cost programme to those with long term COVID-19 symptoms.”

What’s worked?

“Through lived experience of overcoming her own trauma along with extensive therapy training.  Karen has developed a successful toolkit which is now used to help others live their lives to the fullest. This creative approach offers practical solutions that are tailor-made.  The centre of the model is to empower individuals to make decisions that change the circumstances of their own life, which in turn elevates re-traumatisation and stress factors.

We have received referrals from our partners, such as Blackburn with Darwen Carers Services and received great feedback from both our partners and those who have used our service. It has been an absolute privilege to witness the transformation of those who have gone through the 121 programmes. ”

What have you learned? Any challenges?

“We quickly engaged unpaid carers on the recent project, however we were struggling to gain engagement for individuals with brain injury experience. We decided to change the branding and language used to engage those with brain injury. Our volunteer, Gaz, helped to refine this and the third workshop that we ran we had 30 people sign up!

One of our volunteers felt that it was difficult for her, as she was previously facilitating the group in Blackpool – who could no longer meet due to COVID19 restrictions which was disappointing. She was invited to get involved in our online work, but she did not feel comfortable doing this because of her communication.

From this experience, we learnt to focus on developing an online toolkit that can be used by individuals at their own pace and time. This is being developed with feedback with a small consultation group.”

What’s next?

“Our virtual counselling support approach, using practical strategies for diverse client groups has shown to be a successful model. Brain Health Breakthrough CIC is now looking to collaborate with other partner organisations to offer our 121-support package.

Also offer training packages to other social enterprises, communities and groups who  would benefit from the simple  holistic methods we have developed to help clients self-soothe, self-regulate and calm the nervous system, to enhance  mental health and wellbeing.”

What advice, contacts, or resources would help you?

“Being able to communicate the effectiveness of the model and to work with other partners in the North West. We have also developed a range of video, audio, and visual resources to help our clients. To be able to showcase these on a variety of professional platforms would allow those who need them to access them easily.”

Why we’re sharing these stories

Each year, an individual or organisation from each of our five categories plus one exceptional judges’ choice individual is recognised at our annual Igniting Inspiration celebration event.

We publish each and every nomination to raise awareness of all the positive work that goes on in the North. While, this year, our physical event had to be deferred, our campaign to spread stories of positive social impact continues – good news is needed!