The winners of the first UKABIF Film Award were announced at UKABIF’s Annual Conference on Monday 14th November. There were two runners up, Jeremiah Humphreys-Piercy for his film ‘Not Your Common Girl’. This film is about Esme, she is is not your common girl – she has acquired brain injury and after prompting from her friend Riley she decides to start a YouTube Channel to raise awareness, share her story and help people understand the effects of the injury she refuses to let define her. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RlmQNRhC9aI&list=PLMmtHoTsbABb6UY4agNI3_v1bPOz2KcZA&index=7
The second runner up was Daniel Linn-Pearl for ‘Not my first Rodeo’. It is estimated that at least half the homeless population have sustained a traumatic brain injury. In 2015, Steph Grant (a brain injury survivor with experience of homelessness) and a research team began exploring how and why some brain injured people become homeless. This film tells the story of one of the men, ‘Michael’, who was interviewed as part of the research, illustrating how his psychological and cognitive problems, combined with a dearth in appropriate support can lead to isolation and becoming ‘lost’ to the system. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y-3xX6WPcdg&list=PLMmtHoTsbABb6UY4agNI3_v1bPOz2KcZA&index=18
An animated or roto-scoped style has been use to highlight the feelings of disassociation which can occur with a brain injury. In this sense the notion of altered perception or reality comes into the foreground, correlating with Michael’s loosened grip on normal everyday life. This is a result of the injury Michael suffered, and the circumstances he is now presented with.
Michael’s story is a painful but not unusual one, yet the interaction between brain injury and homelessness is rarely mentioned in homeless research and policy, leading Michael and others like him to ‘take themselves away’ and become invisible to services and society.
Finally the winner was Alice Duffy for her film ‘The Fence Painter’. Alice’s father, Ian Duffy, suffered two brain haemorrhages in 2012. He now faces long-term neurological and cognitive effects. In this collaborative documentary film, Alice explores how Ian’s experience of every day life has been profoundly transformed by his brain injury. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jfv3BT6mBR0&list=PLMmtHoTsbABb6UY4agNI3_v1bPOz2KcZA&index=13
The film award was kindly sponsored by Irwin Mitchell Solicitors – all of the films can be viewed on YouTube by following this link. https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLMmtHoTsbABb6UY4agNI3_v1bPOz2KcZA