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Last updated on 03-25-2014

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Brain Injury Peer Visitor Association® logo

Click here to read our brochure (PDF)
Click here for an explanation of our logo


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Quality of Life
Grant Recipient 2013
Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation
National Stroke Association Seal
Video camera Watch a video about our organization.

The Brain Injury Peer Visitor Association®:

  • Is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization made up of and led by volunteers.
  • Has a 125-member team of trained volunteers.
  • Is a Peer Visitor program for ALL types of brain injuries, for example:
    • strokes
    • aneurysms
    • anoxia
    • tumors
    • surgery
    • brain diseases
    • concussions
    • brain bleeds
    • car wrecks
    • falls
    • beatings
    • sports injuries
    • military service
    • etc.
  • Provides Hope, Support, Empathy, Education, and Information for hospitalized and rehabilitating brain injury survivors and their families from someone who has BEEN THERE and DONE THAT! ©
  • Visits with over 4,300 brain injury survivors and their caregivers each year.
  • Provides Peer Visits:
    • On-site (hospital/rehab facility)
    • Arranged (in homes, coffee shops, restaurants, nursing homes, etc.)
    • Via phone calls
    • Through email

The Brain Injury Peer Visitor Association® team members give support and resources at a critical time in the recovery process.

We provide:

  • A role model — For the survivor, family members, and friends, to see how recovery from brain injury can result in a happy and healthy life. We demonstrate how survivors learn to cope with their injury or illness, and learn to develop compensatory strategies and acceptance.
  • Information and Referral Services — A packet of information to be taken home, full of educational materials and information about brain injury, community resources, information on financial and governmental services, support groups, stories from survivors, lists of books and websites, and how to care for someone with a brain injury; and provide suggested referrals for medical specialists, counseling, physical rehabilitation, support groups, etc.
  • Empathy — A listening ear and a sounding board for caregivers and survivors.
  • Coping Strategies — Sharing positive strategies that have worked for each of us.
  • Direction — A "roadmap" which will assist caregivers and survivors in navigating the road ahead, including how to obtain financial support for therapies, treatments, and services from organizations that provide monetary support.

The Brain Injury Peer Visitor Association®'s goal is to continue to expand our Peer Visitor Program throughout the state of Georgia and across the United States. We have received many compliments about our Peer Visitors, their help and support, the information and resources provided, and the timing of the contacts.

Awards and Recognition

  • Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation Quality of Life grant was awarded to the Brain Injury Peer Visitor Association® for 2013. Our association was selected out of hundreds of applicants. The grant money will be used to copy and compile the thousands of packets of information that are handed out to each brain injury survivor and caregiver who is Peer Visited. Click here to read more about this grant.
  • Palacia Seaman Altruism Award 2013 by Emory Healthcare Wesley Woods Center (presented to a special person and/or group because of their altruistic [principle of living for the good of others] spirit)
  • Golden Apple Family Services Department Award (Children's Scottish Rite) — 2013
  • The Spirit of Shepherd Center Award for Excellence in Volunteer Service April 12, 2012
  • 11 Alive Community Service Award 2011 (one of 11 recipients, including Ted Turner; awarded by WXIA-TV/Atlanta, Channel 11)
  • Recognized as one of the 2009 Shepherd Angels (for outstanding volunteer service to the Shepherd Center and Shepherd Pathways)

Brookdale Center

Read 'Visitors' Changing Lives One Story At A Time
in the NCH Healthcare System's
Health Matters January 2014

Naples, Florida now has a Brain Injury Peer Visitor Association team of volunteers (all brain injury survivors) at the 54-bed rehabilitation center at The Brookdale Center for Healthy Aging & Rehabilitation. Brookdale is part of the NCH Healthcare System.

Naples found Ann Boriskie, the director of the Brain Injury Peer Visitor Association®, via the Internet, and worked about 9 months with Ann to have her establish their Brain Injury Peer Visiting team.

Read the full story here!

Grady team
Grady Hospital selected the Brain Injury Peer Visitor team of volunteers to be their Volunteer of the Month during Stroke Awareness Month, May 2013!

Click here for the Grady monthly newsletter, INSIDE GRADY, May 2013!

Spinal Column Spring 2013 Special Visits
Ann, Kris, RoseAnn, Laura, Bruce
Shepherd Center's online Spinal Column Magazine has a wonderful article on our Brain Injury Peer Visitor Association® and program at Shepherd, written by John Christensen.

Read the story about four brain injury survivors and how they "give back" their help to assist other brain injury patients and their families at the Shepherd Center and Shepherd Pathways. Told in their own words, read the moving stories of: the program's founder, Ann Boriskie (car wreck survivor); Bruce Allen (abscesses in his brain); Kris Lorenz (survived a car wreck with an 18 wheeler truck); Roseann Olson (actually died and drowned when scuba diving and lived to tell about it).

Read this article and see all of the photos!

Ann Boriskie at the Pilot Inernational Convention Ann Boriskie, a member of the Peachtree Pilot Club in Atlanta, Georgia, spoke at the Pilot International Annual Convention & Leadership Conference on July 20, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The title of her speech was "Life Will Never be the Same — But it Can Be Better!" She spoke to a room of almost 1,000 Pilot Club members from across the United States and the world.

On July 21, Ann presented an informative workshop on "First Aid for Brain Injury Survivors & Their Loved Ones; Hope, Support, Empathy, Education & Information©".

Pilot International's main mission is to educate about brain health and brain safety.

Bryan Durio Volunteer Spotlight Bryan Durio, one of our peer visitors, was chosen for Shepherd Center's Volunteer Spotlight in their August 2012 Volunteer News!

Read the article here (PDF).

Ann Boriskie & Fred Kalil
Ann Boriskie with Fred Kalil of WXIA 11-Alive
Exciting news! Our director, Ann Boriskie, was awarded one of the eleven 2011 Community Service Awards from WXIA 11-Alive for creating, developing, and implementing the Brain Injury Peer Visitor Association®! We are all very proud of Ann and are honored to be a part of this much-needed service. Congratulations, Ann!

Watch a YouTube video about Ann, her award, and our association!

Croix

New Peer Visitor on the Block!

Meet Croix, a 5-year-old Canine Assistants Golden Lab Service Dog who visits with Sue and Eileen Harrison at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta/Scottish Rite and at Shepherd Pathways! He is a sweet, gentle boy who is willing and able to share his unconditional love with all who are interested!

Read about Croix.

Learn more about Canine Assistants.

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