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​Stockport community stroke choir appeals for votes

Press Release   •   Nov 14, 2016 16:30 GMT

A Stockport based charity choir is appealing for local residents to vote for them in the Aviva Community Fund 2016, to help the group receive up to £10,000 in funding and keep the choir alive.

The North West Community Stroke Choir is relying on votes to increase their chances of winning the funding. Only projects with the most votes will become finalists, so additional support is vital.

The North West Community Stroke Choir was created by the Stroke Association and is made up of local stroke survivors, carers, volunteers and health professionals. Now the group is run by volunteers and meets each Monday from 6pm-7:30pm at Crescent Road Community Centre in Stockport.

The choir aims to enable stroke survivors and the local community to discover their musical side, and regularly visits stroke units of local hospitals, performing to show patients that it is possible to have a life after stroke. They also support events and campaigns for the Stroke Association and perform at local community events to raise awareness of stroke.

Joyce Booth, Family and Carer Support Coordinator at the Stroke Association, said: “A stroke happens in an instant but its effects can last a lifetime. Relationships and lives can change for ever. People can become socially isolated and lacking in confidence.

“When creating the choir, we set out to build a strong social group to improve the lives of stroke survivors across Stockport and Greater Manchester. It was originally funded as a seven week project, but due to its success and popularity, the group has managed to continue. However, we are reliant on our own fundraising activities.

“The Aviva funding would give us the opportunity to help even more people affected by stroke. In the long-term it would enable the choir to become self-supporting and more widely accessible, as well as support our dream to make a recording.”

In January 2015, Ron Henshall, 66, from Cheadle, had a major stroke which left him with no words at all, and he had to completely re-learn how to communicate.

Ron attends the choir on a Monday evening, saying: “It’s been brilliant for my speech. Talking to the other members each week has helped me so much. I’m now singing in the choir as well as playing my guitar. Having a role helps me to focus and mine is to help the singers stay in tune!”

After a stroke around one in three survivors have difficulty speaking and understanding, which can be terrifying and isolating. But with the Stroke Association’s support, people like Ron can find new ways to communicate. Voting closes at 12noon on Friday 18 November. To vote for the North West Community Stroke Choir, please visit: https://community-fund.aviva.co.uk/voting/project/view/16-2704

A stroke is a brain attack which happens when the blood supply to the brain is cut off, caused by a clot or bleeding in the brain. There are around 152,000 strokes in the UK every year and it is one of the largest causes of disability. There are over 1.2 million people in the UK living with the effects of stroke.  

Stroke Association is a charity. We believe in life after stroke and together we can conquer 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 www.stroke.org.uk