Every day the Foundation is contacted by stroke survivors and their families who share stories of their experiences after stroke. Many survivors believe they were discharged from hospital and placed back into the community without adequate support.
The Stroke Foundation receives limited funding from the government to achieve our mission to stop stroke, save lives and end suffering. Thanks to the generosity of our supporters we are able to work towards our vision but there is much more we can do. A new campaign was launched in September to unite and increase the voice of stroke and garner support to ‘fight stroke’. We are calling on our supporters to join us in this very important campaign.
The Fight Stroke campaign was conceived to raise awareness of the grim fact that stroke is Australia’s second biggest killer yet many community members underestimate its impact. In Australia around 160 strokes occur every day. Strokes are largely preventable and they need to stop.
By inviting every Australian to join the fight against stroke, the Foundation is empowering individuals to actively contribute to raising the profile of stroke. It is all about educating others; to understand what a stroke is; how to prevent stroke; and the impact that stroke has on sufferers and their networks.
Ade Djajamihardja and his wife Kate Stephens (pictured above) know only too well the impact stroke can have. Demanding 12 hour days spent working on their successful film and television production company were put on hold, and their world turned upside down when Ade suffered a stroke in July last year.
Post stroke Ade spent six months in hospital with a great deal of time in intensive care. He was not expected to survive. He underwent brain surgery to reduce the swelling in his skull and was placed in an induced coma for some weeks.
The pair have returned to their Melbourne home, but their lives have changed drastically with Ade physically devastated by the stroke. He suffered complete hemiplegia on the left side of his body and lost a lot of his vision, which means he is unable to work. Kate has taken on the role of full-time carer.
“We’ve been through a traumatic time, but we choose to be positive. Until you get close to something like stroke, you don’t think it can happen to you. Hopefully the Fight Stroke campaign will make people understand it can”, Kate says.
Ade is making progress in his physical rehabilitation. He says setting goals has really helped him to literally take steps forward.
“At first I wanted to sit up, then feed myself and be able to talk”, he says. “Working with my speech therapist and physiotherapist I’ve been able to achieve this”.
He is now focused on being able to walk across the 100 metre long bridge near their home and is already walking six metres with just his walking stick.
Ade says that he hopes Fight Stroke will make more people aware of how devastating stroke is and why it’s important to reduce your risk.
“I’m all for helping the National Stroke Foundation raise awareness of this terrifying and preventable situation. If Fight Stroke helps others, I’m all for it”, Ade says.
Like Ade and Kate, our supporters have enabled the Stroke Foundation to raise awareness and prevention of this terrible
You can join the fight against stroke by visiting www.fightstroke.au