TV’s Loose Women host Kaye Adams is throwing her support behind the Stroke Association’s ‘Here for You’ telephone support service, which helps combat loneliness and isolation.
Kaye, whose mum had two strokes in 2018, said: “Stroke is a cruel condition that turns lives upside down in an instant. When my mum had a stroke our whole family’s lives changed forever. The thought of that happening during lockdown is just unbearable.
“I can only imagine how scary it must feel for survivors and their loved ones. Having someone to talk things through, especially as people struggle to come to terms with what’s happened to them, is vital.
“The Stroke Association’s new ‘Here for You’ service across the UK offers real hope to people as they cope with the impact of stroke on their lives. That’s why I’m proud to support this amazing charity and their work.”
Bridget Bergin, Executive Director of Stroke Support Services at the Stroke Association, said: “Stroke survivors have told us that one of the most important things that helps them with their recovery is speaking to other stroke survivors, but also just having someone to talk to is important.”
One in five people with long-term conditions including stroke have not left the house since mid-March and over half (58%) of clinically extremely vulnerable people are continuing to shield even as lockdown eases. Many stroke survivors live with comorbidities or are over-70 and have been advised to shield.
The charity’s ‘Here for You’ telephone service enables stroke survivors and volunteers to talk to each other and help them feel connected.
Stroke survivors and their carers can sign up for a half hour phone call, weekly, for 12 weeks with a trained Stroke Association volunteer.
Juliet Bouverie, Chief Executive of the Stroke Association, said: “No stroke survivor should feel alone as every stroke survivor deserves the best chance with their recovery. I’m a volunteer supporting two stroke survivors around the UK. I look forward to our weekly calls and we get on really well. It’s so rewarding to know that I can make a direct positive impact on someone’s life. Each week I notice how their confidence and speech are improving and I’m also learning new ways of getting better at supporting them too. It makes a difference to my mood and wellbeing too.
“Demand for the service is already huge and we urgently need more volunteers. You don’t need to be a stroke survivor to volunteer. You’ll be helping people in the early days after their stroke or stroke survivors who may be feeling lonely or isolated and just in need of a chat.”
- The coronavirus pandemic has meant that all 215 Stroke Association Groups have been unable to meet, denying stroke survivors the vital peer to peer support for over four months now.
- The charity is still unsure when these groups will be able to start up their face-to-face meetings again.
- The languages the charity can offer support through its current volunteers are English, Welsh, French, German, Mandarin, Punjabi, Bengali, Hebrew, Japanese, Dutch, Italian, Arabic, Spanish, Swedish, Urdu, Portuguese, Somali, Hindi, Shona, Tamil, Turkish and Malayalam. Support in BSL over video call is also currently available.
Stroke Helpline: 0303 3033 100