There are 100,000 strokes in the UK each year. Historically stroke support has focused primarily on those over the age of 65, but 25% of people who have a stroke – 25,000 people per year, are of working age or younger. Different Strokes was established specifically to meet the needs of younger stroke survivors.
Stroke is especially isolating for working-age people; often with young families to support and relying on employment but suddenly unable to work. It comes with little or no warning, and younger stroke survivors must learn to accept newfound physical, emotional and cognitive limitations, with disabilities including paralysis, memory issues, depression, anxiety and severe fatigue.
Different Strokes has grown hugely since its inception, with National Lottery funding playing a major role, allowing the charity to become self-sustaining after a strategic review in 2016. The central pillar is peer-to-peer support by survivors, for survivors, to help them recover and rebuild their lives. Different Strokes offers support and exercise groups, an information line, family support, information packs and a wealth of information online, along with positive stories of recovery.
The network of more than 40 exercise and support groups across the UK is run by volunteer-coordinators, many of whom are stroke survivors themselves. Particular emphasis is placed on exercise as it has been shown to lift mood, reduce stress and increase self-confidence, as well as peer support and social activities, so that stroke survivors can share their experiences with each other.
For more information about Different Strokes visit the website.
If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to get in touch
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