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The ‘Northland Brain Train’ Journey

Published 06 April 2010, Posted in Northland / 1 Comment

Kaitaia Primary School Kapahaka GroupWell it came and it went chugging its way through Northland.

First stop was at sunny Kaitaia.  What a wonderful host Kaitaia Primary School was.  They put on an awesome Kapa Haka performance to kick the day off and things only got better.  They also out did themselves with the refreshments and the tasty treats the children provided.

Over eighty people attended the event and it seemed everyone was truly impressed with Dr Maurice Curtis’s presentation.  He gave an enlightened talk about how our lifestyle affects our brain and also touched on how we can improve brain activity. 

Alzheimers Northland information display Afterwards, representatives from local community groups that work with people, thier whanau/family, carer or frieinds who have a specific impairment that effects thier brain, spoke to the audience about the impairment and explained what services their organisation provides and how to contact them.  Information stands were available for people to get information to take away with them and field workers were able to answer any questions from the public.

Brain Injury Association display stand at KaitaiaTuesday saw the Brain Train stopping off at Kaikohe.  Once again we were treated to a brilliant Kapa Haka performance from the youngsters at Kaikohe East Primary School.  These young people looked like they were really enjoying themselves up on stage and gave the performance 100%.  What a talented bunch they are. 

The program ran pretty much as it did the day before in Kaitaia, with a short break for morning tea.  Once again over eighty people attended which we felt was a great success and only reiterated the fact that people are hungry for more information. 

Dr John Reynolds starts his presentation to a packed audience at Forum NorthForum North was the host for the Wednesday event.  What a marvellous venue this is.  Nothing is too much trouble for the staff there and this was a good thing as we kept asking for more chairs as our expectations were surpassed with over 300 people attending through out the day.

First guest speaker was Dr John Reynolds who explained the benefits of positive reinforcements (repeating things to form a good memory) and also talked about various diseases of the brain i.e.: dementia, Parkinsons, Alzheimers etc.

Dr Heidi Pridmore was the next neuro-scientist to speak.  She spoke about Brain Attack and what you should know.  She explained what happened to our brains when they came under attack by such things as a Stroke and the advances in medical procedures.

In the afternoon, Adrienne Kohler of the Neurological Foundation spoke about basic brain health and steps we can do to improve this.

It was a long day but everyone was delighted with the outcome and a lot of positive comments were heard.

Throughout the three days a quiz was run asking some simple questions about the displays with a Nintendo DSE Lite as a prize.  Congratulations to Samuel Cook of Kerikeri for winning this fantastic prize sponsored by the Northland DIAS Collective.  It’s on its way.

Because of the success of this whole event, it looks likely to become an annual event.  There have been many suggestions on how we can improve the program and suggested additions.

We look forward to seeing everyone again next year.  Watch this space for Brain Train updates later next year.

The Forum North event and presentations were filmed by Channel North and will soon be available on DVD, we will let you know when this becomes available.

Images from Kaitaia

Leonard Olsen, Tiaho Trust, welcomes visitors to the Northland Brain Train in Kaitaia

 Dr Maurice Curtis presents at the Northland Brain Train in Kaitaia  Kaitaia school children take the opportunity to check out the Epilipsy Northland information display

Images from Kaikohe
Kaikohe East Primary School perform a kapahaka in front of thier class mates and visitors Kaikohe East Primary School perform a kapahaka Epilepsy Northland information display at Kaikohe MS Northland information display Kathy Beale from MS Northland presents

Images from Forum North
Visitors embark at Forum North for the Northland Brain Train Dr John Reynolds presents to a packed audience at Forum North Jonny Wilkinson, Dr John Reynolds, Adrienne Kohlar and Dr Heidi Pridmore Les Higgins from Parkinsons Northland with visitors to his display stand Leah Petersen representing Parent to Parent at thier display stand Neurological Foundation information stand


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