Real life stories

VASD is part of the QEF family of charities. QEF works with people living with physical and learning disabilities or acquired brain injuries to gain new skills and increase independence. Below are just some of the real life stories of people we have helped to make a real difference to the quality of their lives.


“I lived at the QEF Centre for three years, and learnt independent skills to prepare me for my future. I also made friends with several people whilst I lived there. My friends moved into a care home with 24 hour support, I joined them and now live my life how I want and I make my own choices.”


“I have very complex disabilities and require 24 hour care; I thought I would always have to live in a residential home. However, I moved from QEF into my own flat with a live-in carer. I am able to put into practice much of what I learnt and can organise the structure of my days which is fantastic and is more than I could ever have hoped for.”


Joel was 16 years old, busy studying for his GCSEs when his stroke occured.  he was admitted to hospital, where he underwent urgent surgery.

Recovery was complicated by chest infections and pulmonary emboli; he was in Intensive Care for 15 days.
Click here to follow Joel’s Progress


“Aged 17 I had achieved 13 GCSEs, was studying for A levels and hopeful of a University place. I woke up one morning unable to see, by the afternoon I was on a life support machine. Encephalitis and meningitis caused a severe brain injury that left me unable to speak or walk and completely dependent upon carers. I was lucky enough to go to the Brain Injury centre, where specialist teams helped me to re-learn lost skills where possible, and to develop strategies to compensate for irrecoverable ones. I also resumed my education at the Centre, I took a geography A level and am going to Chichester College, where I will live independently on campus. I have my life back on track again.


“When I arrived at QEF I had absolutely no notion of how to look after myself. Recently, I moved into my own bungalow. Care support comes in at pre-arranged times so I can manage my life more or less independently. I was invited to talk to everyone at the Centre about living in the community – going back made me realise how far I have come. Truly, no-one would ever have thought I could live independently.”

Warren by Mollie his fiancee

“Warren is  my fiance and he suffered from a motobike accident when he was 38, which was 6 years ago.  Since he came to Dorincourt in December 2008 he has  made so much progress.  This progress has been continual and everyone’s views have been considered.  Warren has progressed more than anyone expected while he has been at Dorincourt.  It is a wonderful place!  We have found that every member of staff is approachable and feel that all clients are treated the same.  This is the nicest place that Warren has been since his accident, and we are very grateful.”


“After my stroke I was told that I would not be able to drive again, which was a tremendous blow as you can imagine. I was grateful, however, that the DVLA recommended an assessment at the Mobility Centre. The staff there are excellent; expert, caring and very understanding of both my health and concerns. Thankfully the result was positive. They gave me the opportunity to drive again – an opportunity that I thought I would never get. It has changed my life and that of my family, for which I am most grateful.”


“I was the victim of a criminal assault which affected my confidence to such a degree that I could no longer drive. From a person with an active work and social life I became completely housebound, which was devastating. I was pretty pessimistic when I went to the Mobility Centre, however after two visits everything was very positive. They suggested some car adaptations and recommended a driving instructor who could help me to regain my confidence. I am now driving again, which has enabled me to recover my life – all thanks to the response and encouragement I received from the Centre.”


“I came back from Afghanistan, a triple amputee. I wanted to resume driving my sports car. It was really important to me, the car was an essential part of my life and I needed it back. The assessment was fine, then assessors at the Mobility Centre came up with a package of adaptations to suit my reduced abilities that might just get me back on the road again. Thanks guys, I didn’t think it possible.”

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