The Queen Elizabeth Foundation (QEF) is a charity founded in 1935 with an initial purpose to provide employment training for disabled people. Over the years QEF opened a sheltered workshop, a holiday home, a neuro rehabilitation, and mobility centre, and although centres have changed purpose over the years, QEF is still committed to helping disabled people and people with acquired brain injuries achieve their goals. Today QEF supports people following a stroke, acquired brain injury, incomplete spinal injury, or a neurological illness, helping each person to rebuild core life skills and maximise their independence.
We have worked with many clients who have had the benefit of the incredible work done by the team at QEF. People who have arrived in a seemingly hopeless state have left in a far better condition than they had arrived.
At PLG we also know about how a multi-disciplinary approach can often get the best results for people with disabilities and we love having input into our property design from those who know so much about supporting people along their rehabilitative journey.
QEF’s neuro rehabilitation and nursing service is based at a specialist Care and Rehabilitation Centre just outside Leatherhead with a multi-disciplinary team of therapists that include clinical psychologists, physiotherapists, occupational and speech and language therapists as well as 24/7 nursing care and support. Wendy Hanley from QEF told us about the charity’s experiences during and after Covid.
We opened this £15 million centre at the height of the pandemic in July 2020 which was a challenge in itself, and we worked very closely with NHS Trusts and Commissioners to support rapid discharges out of hospitals in the South East, to help free up vital capacity in the NHS and ensure patients could start their rehabilitation journey as soon as possible. We had quite a few clients who had suffered a stroke as a result of COVID (https://qef.org.uk/about-us/qef-blog/journey-recovery-after-covid-stroke-and-long-covid) as well.
Like many other charities our fundraising events and planned activities seemed to come to a stop almost overnight, including our major appeal to raise the final £2.7 million needed to fully fund and complete the Care and Rehabilitation Centre. We had to launch a £0.5 million emergency appeal to bring in vital funds by September 2020. Our fundraising team were fantastic at thinking on their feet and coming up with innovative virtual events for people to get involved with, some of which have been carried forward as things return to normal.
Queen Elizabeth Foundation has been helping people with disabilities since 1933 and it is great to hear about how they have been able to invest in the future for so many more people in the years to come. To be able to do this during Covid which we know has been such a difficult time for many in the Third Sector demonstrates the resilience and resourcefulness of charities such as QEF which we at PLG see and admire time and time again.
QEF provide training, life style solutions, encouragement and support for disabled children and adults. Their aim is to help every individual to achieve their goals for life, which may involve learning to drive a car, gaining the skills and confidence to live independently or starting on a programme of rehabilitation following an acquired (http://www.qef.org.uk/our-services/neuro-rehabilitation-services/acquired-brain-injury/) brain (http://www.qef.org.uk/our-services/neuro-rehabilitation-services/acquired-brain-injury/) injury.
Read more about the Queen Elizabeth Foundation by clicking here (https://qef.org.uk/)