THIS IS OUR STORY
James Macready-Bryan was assaulted in Melbourne in 2006, on his 20th birthday. An act of senseless violence left James totally and permanently disabled, and left his family facing a nightmare as they attempted to find answers to the overwhelming question: “How are we going to look after our son?”
The James Macready-Bryan Foundation was set up in February 2007 and has two main aims: to provide financial support for care and rehabilitation, not only for James, but also for other young sufferers of an acquired brain injury (ABI); and to give a public voice to those young people – who all too often literally cannot speak for themselves – and to their families and carers.
The Foundation aims to improve the shortfalls in the medical, financial, political and social services systems, in which young lives are saved but then not adequately supported.
Our fundraising has allowed us to contribute significantly to the development of new, age-appropriate residential options for young Australians who might otherwise have no choice but to live in an aged care home.
Most importantly, it allows us to provide vital financial support for additional services in care facilities, for the provision of better and more appropriate home care, for participation in community activities that are otherwise out of financial reach for many, and for equipment and home modifications that may mean the difference between an ABI sufferer living in a care facility and being able to live at home.
WHAT WE DO
The JMB Foundation’s vision is simple: all young sufferers of acquired brain injury should be fully and appropriately supported in their financial, rehabilitation and accommodation needs.
We work on two fronts: raising money, that we can allocate to those who need it; and raising public awareness, not just of the need for the assistance we provide, but also of the tragedy of ABI and the life-long damage that can be inflicted by senseless violence.
The JMB Foundation’s primary goal is to provide financial support for care and services to individuals and their families. This takes many forms, from funding for home modifications, such as the installation of ramps or wheelchair-friendly bathrooms, or equipment that assists with mobility or comfort levels, to contributing towards the cost of one-on-one care, remedial therapy, respite care or participation in community access activities.
This funding is only possible with the generous support of our donors. Donations are the Foundation’s sole source of income and the money we raise/ is made available to approved applicants through a twice-yearly applications process. In 2014 JMB funded grants totalling more than $135,000, providing support for 19 young men and women with an ABI. This funding has made a genuine difference to their care, comfort and quality of life.
The JMB Foundation also has a strong focus on raising awareness of the plight of ABI sufferers – in particular those whose injury is the result of a violent assault – with the aim of preventing such injuries from occurring in the first place. We do this through education, and work in collaboration with Step Back Think to get the message through to those age groups most at risk of becoming a victim, or a perpetrator, of mindless, aggressive and/or alcohol-fuelled violence.
The JMB Foundation has, in the past, been closely involved in the planning and development of a 10-bed purpose-built high care facility for young people in Austin Street, Alphington. Its residents are young men and women with severe brain injuries, who would otherwise have been housed in aged care nursing homes.
The home is a joint project between the Victorian Department of Human Services and care provider Villa Maria, and was the first of its kind in Victoria. In addition to assisting with capital construction funding, the Foundation also provided money for resident therapy resources.
Other young people’s residential projects supported by JMB include two developed by Yooralla as part of the ‘My Future My Choice’ initiative. These are at Dunblane Road, Noble Park and Railway Street South, Altona. The Foundation’s funding provided state of the art resident-controlled automated doors, and essential ceiling hoists.
The Foundation’s advocacy role helps to raise public awareness of the needs of young people with ABI. Through lobbying state and federal governments, we have helped to make the NDIS a reality. We continue to have input in this area and will work for an outcome that means grieving families do not have to fight for every dollar to provide their children with the care and therapies they so desperately need.
With the generous support of our donors, the JMB Foundation can continue to provide the funding that makes such a difference to the lives of the people we help. We aim to build our fundraising to enable us to expand our grants program, so that in the future we can give even more financial assistance to a greater number of young men and women with an ABI, and help to improve life for them, their carers and their families.
When James Macready-Bryan was assaulted in Melbourne in 2006, leaving him totally and permanently disabled, his family were faced with the task of working their way through a nightmare of overlapping services in an attempt to find answers to their one overwhelming question: “How are we going to look after our son?”
The resources and links provided on this page are aimed at helping you find your own answers.
A comprehensive and easy to understand summary of:
- The services you may need
- An explanation of how everything fits together
- Strategies to get the most out of what’s available.
The Young People In Nursing Homes National Alliance is Australia’s first peak body for young Australians with disability and high and complex support needs.
BrainLink Services is a Victorian based service that is dedicated to improving the quality of life of people affected by acquired disorders of the brain, by providing support to their families and carers.
Brain Injury Australia (BIA) represents all Australians with acquired brain injury (ABI) whatever the cause.
The key aim of the Summer Foundation is to change human service policy and practice related to young people in nursing homes (YPINH).
Volunteer at the Melbourne Marathon or another one of our events. Get in touch here
Donate to the JMB Foundation by clicking on the button below and following the prompts
You could organise a fundraising activity to support the JMB Foundation – for example, hold a cake stall or organise a fun run.
Helen Sykes - Chair
Helen is an information and education publications editor who also has extensive experience in the not-for-profit disability sector. In addition to her role as inaugural Chair of the Foundation she is a helpline adviser for Alzheimer’s Australia Vic and has been an active advocate for the NDIS.
Richard is a friend and neighbour to James’ father Andrew. As a practising barrister he brings legal expertise to the Foundation. Richard is also involved with a number of other boards and community organisations.
Di has worked as a government policy adviser and in media, and uses that expertise to help drive the Foundation’s advocacy role. She has known the Macready-Bryan family since 1999.
Andy is a lawyer and corporate advisor who has been a previous supporter of the Foundation through the Irvine Club, a group he established in 2004 with friends to support various charities. Andy has maintained an ongoing relationship with James’ father Andrew since this initial support of the Foundation and is also a director of other not-for-profit organisations.
Melanie is a chartered accountant and principal of MC & Co – Chartered Accountants. She has extensive experience in business advisory, taxation, superannuation and financial management. Many of her clients are involved with charitable foundations, and she has been advising and assisting them with their philanthropic interests for many years.
Dr Andy Buck
Andy is a consultant emergency physician with an interest in trauma and medical education. He works at the Alfred Hospital, Cabrini Private Hospital and the Royal Darwin Hospital. He is co-creator and director of the Emergency Trauma Management course, which is designed to teach emergency medicine practitioners how to manage severely injured patients.
Meagan is a People and Culture professional with extensive experience in the not-for-profit sector. Meagan first became involved with the work of the Foundation in her role as Communications and Fundraising Manager. She is committed to advocacy for young people with ABI whose rehabilitation and care needs are not adequately met by disability funding.
David Windlow – Finance Manager and Company Secretary
David is a consulting accountant with a background in retail and not for profit organisations. His son is a long-standing friend of James from primary school days, and David has been involved with the Foundation from its inception.
Professor Andrew Kaye - Patron
Professor Andrew Kaye
The Foundation is fortunate to have as its patron Professor Andrew Kaye, James Stewart Professor of Surgery at the University of Melbourne and Head of the Department of Neurosurgery at the Royal Melbourne Hospital.
Sharon Kent - Communications Manager
Sharon is an administration and communications professional with a background spanning radio, publications, the arts and state government. She joined us in May 2014, bringing her organisational skills and media/communications experience to the team.
Ms Helen Sykes (Chair)
Ms Diana Brown-Greaves
Dr Andy Buck
Ms Melanie Cassy
Mr Andy Evans
Mr Mike Fitzpatrick
Mr Richard Harris
Ms Sharon Kent
Mr Tim McDonald
Ms Jennie Nairn
Mr John Nairn
Ms Meagan Norbury
Mr Andrew Rule
Ms Dianne Rule
Ms Jillian Stewart
Ms Heather Thorne
Mr Mark Wagner
Mr David Windlow