The idea was born
In 2013, a few casual conversations around shared hobbies and interests resulted in the Friends of Attend Acquired Brain Injury (FAABI) exploring the idea of holding some Subbuteo events for its community of beneficiaries and carers.
A demo event was held with the ABI Job Club clients, and their thoughts were invited on whether a series of Subbuteo evenings would be welcomed by ABI survivors. The overall impression they offered was that it would be worth promoting as a pilot.
FAABI then approached Paul Lamond Games (distributors of Subbuteo in the UK), who kindly donated teams, goals and balls for the pilot sessions. The refreshments were covered by a donation by ITV, for the use of the Stadium of Fingers in the creation of their FA Cup video, shown on ITV before the FA Cup Final between Man City and Wigan.
The Subbuteo evenings are an opportunity for participants to spend some relaxed time with fellow table football enthusiasts, playing a few games and sharing a drink and nibbles. The evenings are open to all – those who have never played Subbuteo table football and want to ‘give it a go’, and those who used to play the game when they were younger. Standard of play is irrelevant, but a cheerful disposition is mandatory!
Six consecutive Tuesday evenings, between 6.30pm and 8.30pm between 9th July 2013 to 13 Aug 1013.
The final table
"Before my accident, I was 18 and I had just qualified as a horse riding instructor. Two weeks after receiving my qualification, I was in a car accident and suffered a serious head injury.
I stayed in hospital and rehabilitation for nine months. I remember feeling absolutely devastated but I just knew I had to rebuild my life.
With lots of support I eventually got work in an office and then started to look for ways that I could socialise again.
I heard about Friends of Attend ABI (FAABI) and decided to give it a go, first by joining their discussion group. Then recently I came to FAABI’s Subbuteo evenings.
I had never played Subbuteo before, however having been to FAABI before I knew that it would be nothing but fun.
Initially I simply saw it as a social thing where I would just come in and chat to other people about the games. However, I started playing a few matches myself and found that I really got into it. I’ve always been a competitive person and Subbuteo bought that side right out of me! In the end, I ended up winning the entire competition and was very happy about this!
Overall, I think FAABI is fantastic. Because of FAABI, my confidence has grown and it has given me something to look forward to every week. My life now is very different to the life I had before but the most important thing is that I feel like I am living."