Birthday is icing on the cake for Bromsgrove stroke centre

By Tristan Harris Thursday 15 May 2014 Updated: 15/05 21:51

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Buy photos » The cake was cut by Coun Janice Boswell, Life After Stroke Centre co-ordinator Jo Hughes and Coun John Ruck. s

MORE THAN 150 people went to a community fayre at Bromsgrove’s Life After Stroke Centre last Thursday (May 8) to celebrate the building’s second birthday.

A variety of events were held at the centre to mark the marvellous milestone, to officially open the new Edith Murphy House and also to highlight Action on Stroke Month, which is happening throughout May.

Those who went along were able to find out more about stroke, mini-stroke and the services available at the centre for stroke survivors and their families.

Visitors could also have their blood pressure checked and get advice on the best ways of reducing their risk of stroke.

There was a barbecue and a special performance from a choir made up of almost all stroke survivors who had had speech barriers to overcome.

And there was also a Tai Chi workshop and community arts opportunity where people could put what they wanted on a canvas.

There was also lots of food, cake and other treats on a buffet which had all been made and donated by volunteers and people affected by stroke.

The Life After Stroke Centre in Bromsgrove is the first of its kind in the UK and Edith Murphy House is the latest addition to it. It encompasses a lounge, arts and crafts room and quiet room which stroke survivors and their families can use.

Hugh Tibbits, The Stroke Association’s regional head of operations for the West Midlands, said: “It has been very very busy given the weather, we were a bit concerned but the turn out has been fantastic.”

Jo Avis, a stroke survivor who attended the event, said she was there not just there to celebrate the building’s birthday but also her tenth anniversary of being a stroke survivor.

She said: “As a new person coming to the centre, I get the impression everyone who comes here uses their unique skills and expertise to share with one another.

“It’s really humbling to see the big stroke community here today - stroke affects both sexes of all ages, its nice to come here and see your not the only one.

“Coming here, it’s nice to feel you have something to give as a stroke survivor instead of being the person who is always having to ask for help from others - it’s a very empowering feeling, it’s nice.

Jo has also donated a lot of artwork to the centre which is now on its walls.

Visit www.facebook.com/year10.avis.art to see more of Jo’s work.

Visit www.stroke.org.uk/LASC for more information on the centre and www.stroke.org.uk/strokemonth for more on Action on Stroke month

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Buy photos» Volunteers Brenda Harding and Paul Smith looking at all the wonderful tombola prizes with stroke survivor Jo Avis. Picture by Beth Sharp.

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Buy photos» A special cake was made for the occasion. s

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