Joanna Wright

History of Headway Essex

With the launch of our new website, I thought it was a good opportunity to talk about the history of Headway Essex.

Reflecting on my time here spans some 21 years now! It was in 1997 that I joined the charity and my role was to lift the profile of Headway Essex and raise funds to sustain and develop it. Fundraising grew from a small porta cabin where the phone never rang to a vibrant town centre office with a busy team raising essential funds to help sustain this vital charity.

History of Headway Essex

Headway Essex is unrecognisable now from its humble beginnings. With the rise in profile of Headway Essex came an increased demand for services. In order to accurately reflect this, in 2000, we changed our name from Colchester and North East Essex Headway to Headway Essex.

Since then we have doubled the size of the Headway Centre in Colchester and the number of people we support there. And we now have ambitions to purchase the freehold on the building. We have also established a countywide Community Support Service, providing help and advice to over 500 individuals living with acquired brain injury each year.

I was appointed as Chief Executive in 2011 and I took the role at a time of great change within the statutory sector. These challenges still remain and are more poignant than ever, yet we remain resolute and continue to identify ways in which we can sustain the charity in the long-run.

However, we are as always very reliant on our supporters to help is to continue to provide our services. The recent Colour5K is a very good example of this, where 500 people came together to participate in an immensely fun challenge event to raise over £10,000. I cannot thank everyone enough. It’s only with the support of our community that we can write our future!

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