Disability charity rebrands amid 500-staff transfer

19 Sep 2023 News

Brainkind logo


The Disabilities Trust has rebranded as Brainkind, after the charity announced that 500 staff would transfer to it earlier this summer.

Brainkind, which supports people with brain injury and other neurological conditions, said its new name better reflected its values and new ways of working after its 40 years of existence.

The charity said that it had changed its name after consulting its staff, beneficiaries, commissioners and other supporters.

This comes after the charity announced this summer that it had acquired four neurological care services operated by Sue Ryder, which will see nearly 500 staff transfer between the charities. 

Brainkind, which had a total income of £53m in the year to May 2022, told Civil Society that the rebranding cost between £130,000 and £150,000 and that it used the proceeds from the sales of autism services to cover the costs. 

500 staff to transfer to Brainkind

In July, Brainkind announced that it would take over the ownership of Sue Ryder’s four neurological care services later this year.

Sue Ryder previously said that spreading its focus across palliative, neurological and bereavement support had become “increasingly challenging” and that it was time “to focus our strategic direction and growth on palliative and bereavement support and divest our neurological services”.

As part of the acquisition, nearly 500 employees will transfer from Sue Ryder to Brainkind, which has 1,127 staff members, according to its latest accounts.

Brainkind told Civil Society that it is still negotiating the acquisition with Sue Ryder and that the purchase is due to be completed in October or November this year. 

‘We enter a new phase’

The charity said it has worked with a creative agency since 2022 to develop a brand telling its story and representing how its teams feel about the work it does.

Its former name “leaves a legacy” it is proud of, but “as we enter a new phase for the charity, we are focussing on acquired brain injuries and neurological conditions and it is time for our brand to change to reflect that”, it said. 

Richard Jane, director of external affairs at Brainkind, said that the new name is “short, memorable [and] strongly indicates who we are and, importantly for a modern brand, works well on digital platforms”. 

“We believe we now have a brand which truly reflects our values and the needs of the people we support,” he said.

“We want to appeal to our existing audiences but also to new fundraising groups and new generations of people who will help us standout in the care and charity sectors – and this new brand will help us to reach them.”

Brainkind’s chief executive Irene Sobowale said: “I’m really proud of our new brand, the change it signifies and the positive future it will help establish for the organisation and the people we support. 

“This is an exciting time for Brainkind, and we are delighted that our new brand reflects who we are and our big ambitions. Our new strategy focusses on impact and reach – both within our services and beyond, and our new brand will help us achieve that.

“Our new, state-of-the-art, 40-bed, Brainkind Neurological Centre York that we will be opening later this year encapsulates this new beginning and we are really on the cusp of an exciting new era.” 

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