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Stroke survivors urged to join new music and singing group

PUBLISHED: 20:00 10 October 2017 | UPDATED: 20:22 10 October 2017

Anna Bridle, Stroke Association communication volunteer, with Ruby White. Picture: STROKE ASSOCIATION

Anna Bridle, Stroke Association communication volunteer, with Ruby White. Picture: STROKE ASSOCIATION

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Stroke survivors are being encouraged to sign up to a new music and singing group to help their recoveries.

Swaffham Community Centre. Picture: Ian Burt Swaffham Community Centre. Picture: Ian Burt

The Stroke Association is launching its Communication Support Music and Singing Group on Thursday, November 9 at Swaffham Community Centre.

The weekly group will be made up of stroke survivors, carers and volunteers. It will be supported by community musician Dr Tina Blaber-Wegg.

One stroke survivor who will be joining the group is nonagenarian Ruby White, 93, from Swaffham, who had a stroke in March which left her with aphasia.

There are more than 100,000 strokes in the UK each year and around one third will have aphasia, which affects people’s ability to communicate, whether it is speaking, reading, writing or understanding.

Ms White said: “I’m very excited to join the Stroke Association’s music and singing group. Since having a stroke, the Stroke Association has been extremely supportive, and helped me to come to terms with what has happened.

“I’ve always loved music and enjoy humming along to the radio at home but I’ve never joined a choir or played an instrument before. When I heard about the choir, I thought it was an opportunity to have a go at doing something new.”

MORE: Norfolk woman’s stroke battle after dog attack horror

Gemma Smith, communication support coordinator from the Stroke Association, said: “Aphasia has a massive impact on stroke survivors’ lives and some people can find singing can help with their recovery.

“We hope that the music and singing group will help people discover a new talent or rediscover an old one. Whether you’re an absolute beginner or an expert, it’s fun and friendly for all involved.”

In previous years, there have also been fears that stroke survivors in rural areas like Norfolk are not getting the support which they need to recover - even though West Norfolk has previously been described as having a “gold standard” of after care.

To find out more about the choir, contact Gemma Smith on 01366 377803 or email gemma.smith@stroke.org.uk

For more information about strokes, ring the Stroke Association’s helpline on 0303 30 33 100 or visit www.stroke.org.uk.

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