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South Derbyshire service celebrates 15 years of helping stroke survivors find their voice

Press Release   •   May 19, 2014 09:46 BST

A service that provides communications support to stroke survivors across South Derbyshire is celebrating its fifteenth Birthday during Action on Stroke Month. The service, which has helped hundreds of stroke survivors and their families, will be having a party to mark the occasion on 28May 2014 in Heanor, in the Amber Valley.

Each year around 9,700 people have a stroke in the East Midlands and a third will be left with a communication condition called aphasia.  Aphasia affects people’s ability to communicate, whether it is speaking, reading, writing or understanding. Many survivors with aphasia report feeling lonely and frustrated following their stroke because people don’t understand them.

Staff and volunteers at the communication service help stroke survivors improve their communication skills either at home or at local groups, where they can practice and increase their confidence together. The team helps each stroke survivor adjust to life after stroke and to make steps in their recovery, which could include catching the bus unaided, going shopping or returning to work.

Julie Bowler, Assistant Regional Manager, for the Stroke Association in the East Midlands said: “Given the recent uncertainty around funding for public services, we are delighted that this service is celebrating such a momentous birthday.  We are so grateful for the invaluable support we have from our funders and volunteers over the years: through their efforts, we are able to help stroke survivors across the region make their best possible recovery from the devastating impact of stroke

The Stroke Association team is inviting current and past service users, carers, volunteers, commissioners and councilors to help them to celebrate their big birthday.  The event will be taking place in the Community Centre in Heanor from 1-3.30pm.

To find out more about the communications service,  contact Julie Bowler on 0115 871 2465. Action on Stroke Month 2014 is supported by Legal & General. To find out more, please visit

·  A stroke is a brain attack, which happens when the blood supply to the brain is disrupted, caused by a clot or bleeding in the brain. It is the leading cause of severe adult disability in the UK. In the East Midlands over 9,700 people have a stroke every year and over 93,000 people live with the effects of stroke.

·  Stroke Association is a charity. We believe in life after stroke and we’re leading a community of people to change the world for people affected by stroke.  We work directly with stroke survivors and their families and carers, with health and social care professionals and with scientists and researchers. We campaign to improve stroke care and support people to make the best recovery they can. We fund research to develop new treatments and ways of preventing stroke. The Stroke Helpline (0303 303 3100) provides information and support on stroke. More information can be found at

·  Legal & General is supporting Action on Stroke Month as part of its strong commitment to promoting health and well-being within the workplace. Through various initiatives as part of its Health and Wellbeing Programme, the company helps employees reduce their risk of conditions, such as stroke, by quitting smoking and eating a balanced and healthy diet.

·  The Legal & General Group, established in 1836, is one of the UK’s leading financial services companies.  As at 30 June 2013, we were responsible for investing £440 billion worldwide on behalf of investors, policyholders and shareholders.  We also had over 7.3 million customers in the UK for our life assurance, pensions, investments and general insurance plans.