Image of a Support Line Officer with head set on and smiling

Having a stroke can be overwhelming. Whether it’s happened to you or someone close to you, it can leave you feeling frightened, confused and isolated.

Our confidential Stroke Helpline is here to support everyone affected by stroke. You can talk to one of our Support Line Officers at any point along their stroke recovery journey.

Louise called the Stroke Helpline after she had a stroke when she was only 31.

“One day I was fine, the next day I was confined to a wheelchair,” says Louise.

“Although I had support from my family and friends, I didn’t have anyone who understood why I was sad, angry and felt 20 emotions in one minute. I felt very alone and isolated.

“I’d tried searching for help but was told there wasn’t anything available for me because of my age. Then my mum saw an advert for the Stroke Association on Facebook.

“I was very low and depressed, so I rang the Helpline as a last hope. They saved my life. They helped me to see a better path.

“I phoned them a few times for support. The Support Line Officers understood why I felt the way I felt, despite the fact that I’d got my right leg working and could walk with a crutch now. They helped me to understand that I was grieving my old body, but it wasn’t all doom and gloom, there was light at the end of the tunnel.

“They just said: ‘You’ve had a stroke and we’re here to help and support you anyway we can’. I felt supported, listened to and recognised.

“After speaking to the Helpline a few times, they recommended a Stroke Cafe on Zoom that was run by stroke survivors. I wasn’t expecting much to be honest. But within five minutes I felt so welcomed and loved. I now volunteer as the leader of the cafe. I try to make sure that everyone is listened to.

“I want to get my story out there and make folk realise stroke isn’t an old person’s disease. And for anyone like me that’s feeling the way I felt, there is help out there – an organisation that will put its arm round you and support you.”

Thank you to our partners, Buzz Bingo, who’ve donated £57,882 to fund a Support Line Officer for the next two years. This will enable us to help more stroke survivors through the Stroke Helpline, Stroke Association Connect and the Childhood Stroke Support Service.

We’re here to help

Our confidential Stroke Helpline is here to support anyone affected by stroke in the UK, including family and friends. If you have a question or need to talk, email us on helpline@stroke.org.uk or call 0303 3033 100.

Stroke News magazine

This article is featured in the winter 2023 edition of our magazine, Stroke News. Subscribe to our future editions available in print, on audio CD, or via email.