Stride out to promote stroke awareness

Striding for stroke support: Gisborne Stroke Support members, from left, Neville Jenkins, Sherryl Moroney, Linda Warwick, Jodi Iremonger, event organiser Maureen Hyland, community adviser Caroline Callow and Len McCullogh (seated). Picture by Liam Clayton

An inaugural event to promote stroke awareness and encourage support is planned for this weekend.

Gisborne Stroke Support (GSS) has organised the Stride for Stroke event for Sunday to coincide with a branding redesign and website launch, and hopes to see the community dust off their running shoes and tune up their mobility scooters in support.

The 5km course is accessible for anybody who wishes to participate, but leave your bicycles, scooters (except the mobility kind) and canine friends at home.

GSS community adviser Caroline Callow, who has been involved for seven years, said membership has steadily grown over this time.

“When I became involved, we had a group of 40 or so clients and now we have 100 financial members and more than 300 stroke clients.

“It’s wonderful to be able to support so many people in the community but obviously the increase in stroke occurrences is something we want to see decline.”

Strokes are the third-largest killer in New Zealand (about 2500 people a year) and the risk of a secondary stroke is high during the first 12 months of recovery.

Over the past 20 years Maori and Pacific populations have shown a near-doubling in stroke incidence rates

While there has been a trend towards declining stroke incidence rates in New Zealand Europeans over the past 20 years, Maori and Pacific populations have shown a near-doubling in the same period.

“Our mission is to see a reduction in stroke presentations in Gisborne and we see events like this as a great way to address some of the contributing factors of stroke, such as hypertension, and also to increase awareness and fund-raise,” she said.

GSS provides a range of community supports, such as stroke-specific exercise groups to improve motor skills, communication classes to increase cognitive development, and a community support co-ordinator.

Families of those impacted by stroke are also in need of support, says event organiser Maureen Hyland.

“We cover an area from Matawai to Te Araroa, including out to Muriwai, which is a large geographical catchment to cover.

“Like any community support organisation, we have limited resources and are incredibly appreciative of all the funding and support we receive,” she said.

Funding comes from the generosity of local funders, lotteries, Tairawhiti District Health contract (for information and advocacy only), subscriptions, donations and fund-raising.

All money received goes back into the stroke and disability community.

The event will begin at the Beacon Reserve on Centennial Marine Drive at 10am and participants may choose to run, walk or ride a mobility scooter any distance to their own ability.

For further details contact the Gisborne Stroke Support Group Facebook page or the new website at www.gisbornestrokesupport.org.nz

An inaugural event to promote stroke awareness and encourage support is planned for this weekend.

Gisborne Stroke Support (GSS) has organised the Stride for Stroke event for Sunday to coincide with a branding redesign and website launch, and hopes to see the community dust off their running shoes and tune up their mobility scooters in support.

The 5km course is accessible for anybody who wishes to participate, but leave your bicycles, scooters (except the mobility kind) and canine friends at home.

GSS community adviser Caroline Callow, who has been involved for seven years, said membership has steadily grown over this time.

“When I became involved, we had a group of 40 or so clients and now we have 100 financial members and more than 300 stroke clients.

“It’s wonderful to be able to support so many people in the community but obviously the increase in stroke occurrences is something we want to see decline.”

Strokes are the third-largest killer in New Zealand (about 2500 people a year) and the risk of a secondary stroke is high during the first 12 months of recovery.

Over the past 20 years Maori and Pacific populations have shown a near-doubling in stroke incidence rates

While there has been a trend towards declining stroke incidence rates in New Zealand Europeans over the past 20 years, Maori and Pacific populations have shown a near-doubling in the same period.

“Our mission is to see a reduction in stroke presentations in Gisborne and we see events like this as a great way to address some of the contributing factors of stroke, such as hypertension, and also to increase awareness and fund-raise,” she said.

GSS provides a range of community supports, such as stroke-specific exercise groups to improve motor skills, communication classes to increase cognitive development, and a community support co-ordinator.

Families of those impacted by stroke are also in need of support, says event organiser Maureen Hyland.

“We cover an area from Matawai to Te Araroa, including out to Muriwai, which is a large geographical catchment to cover.

“Like any community support organisation, we have limited resources and are incredibly appreciative of all the funding and support we receive,” she said.

Funding comes from the generosity of local funders, lotteries, Tairawhiti District Health contract (for information and advocacy only), subscriptions, donations and fund-raising.

All money received goes back into the stroke and disability community.

The event will begin at the Beacon Reserve on Centennial Marine Drive at 10am and participants may choose to run, walk or ride a mobility scooter any distance to their own ability.

For further details contact the Gisborne Stroke Support Group Facebook page or the new website at www.gisbornestrokesupport.org.nz

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