Brain Changes Initiative

Our Story

In 2013, Dr. Matthew Galati, Founder of Brain Changes Initiative, was in a life-threatening motor vehicle accident that left him with a severe Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). He was rushed to the nearest hospital where he was placed on life support. After 3 days, Dr. Galati emerged from a coma only to discover his ability to function both cognitively and physically was significantly impaired. It was apparent that his chance of returning to his former active life and medical schooling was highly unlikely. 

With the help and support of family and friends, Dr. Galati began his recovery journey. Starting with the basics, he had to relearn simple skills like talking and walking. To stimulate his brain as early as possible, he began reading books and reflecting on chapters while he was still in acute care at the hospital. A few months after his accident, he was admitted to Toronto Rehabilitation Institute (TRI) where he was enrolled in a research study under Senior Scientist and Canada Chair in Traumatic Brain Injury Research, Dr. Green. Through this research study, all of Dr. Galati’s rehabilitation therapies at TRI — including Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy and Speech Language Pathology — were intensified. 

As part of this study, Dr. Galati also participated in a series of neuropsychological evaluations which measured his cognitive abilities such as memory, attention, executive functioning and speed of processing. After six weeks of inpatient rehab, he wrote his first of four evaluations before his discharge. It was clear, based on the results, that it would take a lot of hard work, discipline and dedication to return to a program as demanding as medical school.

Following his discharge from TRI, Dr. Galati began collecting his own research around how best to heal his brain. He learned of the brain’s ability to create new brain cells, foster new connections and change through processes called neurogenesis and neuroplasticity. Based on his research, and in collaboration with his outpatient rehabilitation team, he structured his own rehabilitation program to optimize his recovery. 

Months later, Dr. Galati returned to TRI to undergo his second neuropsychological evaluation. The results were impressive, exceeding both the brain injured population and the standardized healthy population for a similar age and education level.

In September of 2013, he returned to successfully complete his medical degree and subsequently his medical residency program at Western University’s Schulich School of Medicine. Now, a fully licensed physician, Dr. Galati vows to make changes. With insight and knowledge from his medical schooling and residency, in addition to his own recovery, he has founded Brain Changes Initiative to provide advocacy, support and education for TBI survivors. Brain Changes Initiative supports groundbreaking endeavours and research in the field of Traumatic Brain Injury with a larger goal of changing the standard of care for Traumatic Brain Injury in Canada, and eventually world-wide.

Our Mission

Put simply, we want to Revolutionize Brain Health.

Brain Changes Initiative (BCI) is a not-for-profit organization that funds ground-breaking research to improve the standard of care for Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) rehabilitation. BCI also provides awareness, advocacy, and support for Traumatic Brain Injury survivors through knowledge translation, hosting events and establishing programs centered around non-pharmacological approaches to healing the brain.

Our Vision

Improve Status Quo
Elevate the standard of care for people with lived TBI experience. 

The programs, processes and navigation for brain injury rehabilitation. 

Provide community, respect, and resources for people with lived TBI experience.

Instil hope that great brain recoveries are possible.

Work alongside key stakeholders, community leaders, non-profit organizations, influencers, patients, families, and volunteers to raise research funds, educate and provide support for TBI.

Become the global leader for everything brain health.

Eliminate the stigma and create a new thinking paradigm that the brain reroutes, heals and changes.

Our Values

Doing the right thing even when no one is watching.

Instilling trust through openness. 

Treating TBI survivors with dignity.

Believing we are better when we work together.

Staying up-to-date on leading brain health news, TBI resources, and technology.