This Brain Awareness Week, Eve's mum shares her family's experience of living with a brain injury, and what The Yard means to them.

"Before The Yard, it was difficult. Before Eve’s brain injury five years ago, she was just a normal girl. Well, as normal as you can be after having leukaemia twice and then a bone marrow transplant.

Eve had to learn all the basic skills again, including walking, writing, feeding herself, etc. I was at a loss of where I could take Eve and where to get support from other parents in similar situations.

For five years I had lived with the support of my ‘oncology family’. I was told what had happened to Eve was extremely rare and I really struggled to find support. I found my acceptance of my new daughter very hard to deal with.

I had heard about The Yard before, as my nephew is autistic, and now Eve comes along each week to the 10-14s club and also uses the family sessions on Friday afternoons. The Yard is now a sanctuary for the both of us.

For Eve, it is a place she feels normal. The staff have taken the time to get to know her and how to deal with her anxieties. The staff are always looking to the future as well, with ways to help Eve become more independent and get the best from the club. I have tried other clubs specifically for children with additional needs and they haven’t done this, which led to Eve not being able to attend.

Danielle in particular has helped me enormously by coming along to school meetings to support me and to explain what strategies The Yard use with Eve. I think the most important thing for me about The Yard is that I don’t have to go around explaining to other people about Eve’s condition; everyone understands.

The Yard has made a huge difference. Eve is learning to socialise again with her peers, and she has gone from the hospital being her safe place to The Yard being her safe place. Even when Eve is exhausted after school, she still wants to come to club.

For me, even if it is just an hour a week, I can relax."