In a small brick house in northern Baltimore, Joann Anderson-West cares for two injured Army veterans whose families are unable to provide care. One of the veterans, Ralph Stepney, was placed with Anderson-West after he reached out to the Department of Veterans Affairs for help.
“She's family,” Stepney said, “because she treats me like family. She's a very excellent cook. She has a beautiful home, and I'm very, very comfortable here and I enjoy life again.”
Anderson-West’s story is one of many told by the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center (DVBIC) in its ongoing podcast series, “The TBI Family.” Her story is part of an episode that discusses foster care and cognitive rehabilitation for those with a traumatic brain injury (TBI).
The podcast series aims to educate individuals, including caregivers and patients, on care options for TBI, according to Terry Welch, senior communications manager for DVBIC. The podcast may also provide information for those seeking help, but unaware of their options.
“For one reason or another, many folks just don’t know about the different types of care that are available,” Welch said.
In each podcast episode, caregivers, service members and experts on TBI offer their experiences and expertise. Episodes address various aspects of caregiving and TBI, including substance use and TBI, information on VA programs, and useful tips on mantras and balance issues for those with TBI.
DVBIC is interested in feedback on the podcast from providers and service members, Welch said.
“We want to hear more from the people using these resources,” Welch said.