Yvonne Nielsen with two of her national awards for her brain injury advocacy work.

Brain injury advocate wins national award

Yvonne Nielsen was presented with the 2013 Brain Injury Association of Canada Award of Merit at a conference in Kingston, Ontario.

A LOCAL advocate for people who have an acquired brain injury now has two national awards.

Yvonne Nielsen was presented with the 2013 Brain Injury Association of Canada Award of Merit at a conference in Kingston, Ontario.

The award is granted to recognize community members who have exhibited leadership and made significant contributions to advance the cause of acquired brain injury in Canada.

Nielsen acquired her brain injury as a result of a car accident.

“I have done so much over the 26 years to provide information to this community on acquired brain injury,” said Nielsen of the award.

“I have written articles over these years to the newspaper, did school presentations, left the Headline Magazine in various places around town,” she added.

Her advocacy list includes a presentation to city council, appearing on a CFTK Open Connection segment and speaking with provincial cabinet ministers and others when they visit the area.

“Receiving the Award of Merit means a lot to me,” said Nielsen.

Nielsen has, for instance, has asked the city for more and better bike lanes and to have skate boarders wear helmets.

She’s also donated a number of books on brain injuries to the Terrace Public Library and to other local agencies.

In 2011, Nielsen was named the first-ever recipient of the Debbie and Trevor Greene Award of Honour which is now given annually to a person who makes an extraordinary contribution to advance the cause of acquired brain injury in Canada.

Trevor Greene was on duty in Afghanistan as an armed forces reservist when he was attacked by a teen carrying an axe.

The blow nearly split Greene’s brain in half and he has since gone through extensive care and rehabilitation with the assistance of wife Debbie.