Unmasking Project Aims To Pull Back The Curtain On Brain Injury

The Brain Injury Association of Windsor & Essex County is looking to 'unmask' those suffering from the condition.

Executive Director Anna Jurak says the 'Unmasking Brain Injury Project' aims to pull back the curtain on brain injuries.

Local artists have helped those with brain injuries design and paint two dozen masks as part of an exhibit which has been making its way across Windsor-Essex in an effort to raise awareness.

Jurak says each mask tells a story.

"The person who created the mask gives a little bit about themselves. How they acquired the brain injury and how it has affected them. So the stories are very poignant, they're very heartfelt. I've seen people cry reading them because they're just so emotional and so packed. It could happen to any of us."

She says the Art Gallery of Windsor played a part in the project as well.

"The Art Gallery provided an artist to help people to put their thoughts and feelings on to their masks. So it was very, very helpful and is probably why the masks are absolutely beautiful and stunning. It's just to show people that people with brain injury, that they deserve the respect and consideration that everyone else does."

Jurak says brain injuries are more common than you'd think.

"There are a lot of people among us who have a brain injury and we may not be aware of it because they look quite normal. You couldn't tell looking at them, but they may behave in ways that you would not consider normal. So we just have to be aware of that and accept them for who they are and that that's how they behave normally."

The Unmasking Brain Injury exhibit will make a few more stops throughout the region before landing at its final home located at Hotel-Dieu Grace Healthcare.

It's estimated more than 18,000 Ontarians suffer a brain injury each year.  

For more information about the unmasking project and the programs offered by the Brain Injury Association head to www.biawe.com.