Charity congratulates incredible Newton Stewart stroke survivor this Thank You Day

A stroke survivor and dedicated Stroke Association volunteer from Newton Stewart has received a special thanks for his tireless work.

By Brian Yule
Tuesday, 31st May 2022, 6:36 pm
Stewart Anderson started volunteering with the Stroke Association nine years ago
Stewart Anderson started volunteering with the Stroke Association nine years ago

Stewart Anderson (70) had a stroke just over 12 years ago, which brought about his premature retirement.

The stroke affected Stewart’s speech, his spelling, balance, fatigue and emotions.

He said: “I felt largely OK before the ‘event’, but suddenly everything changed in an instant and I lost all sensation on the right side of my body and couldn’t speak at all. I had no idea what was happening to me.

“I live in a rural area, so it was a long way to hospital. Thankfully, my osteopath who I was, recognised my symptoms, and knew I was having a stroke.

"He dialled 999, and if it hadn’t been for his speedy action, and the speedy response and care of the paramedics, I may not have been able to receive a life-saving drug that has to be administered within 3.5 hours of symptoms starting.

"I have been left with some very slight disability, but have generally made a remarkable recovery.

Stewart started volunteering with the Stroke Association in April 2013.

Starting as a know your blood pressure volunteer with the charity, to raise awareness of stroke prevention and the FAST message, Stewart has carried out numerous blood pressure testing events in his local community.

He is also a fundraiser, organising his own fundraising events and a stroke ambassador, raising awareness of stroke through talks at meetings and events.

"He most recently became a ‘Lived Experience ‘Here For You’ volunteer which is a telephone befriending service for people who may be dealing with loneliness and isolation following their stroke.

Stewart said: “I was given so much help when I was recovering from my stroke, I wanted to give something back.

"I had time on my hands, believed passionately in the cause and wanted to spread the message that strokes are preventable and with support you can recover.”

This Thank You Day and National Volunteers Week, the Stroke Association and its president, The Duke of Kent, are thanking volunteers like Stewart who have given everything to help others.

The annual event which takes place on Sunday, is extra special this year, as it coincides with The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee weekend.

The Duke of Kent said: “On this Thank You Day, it is an honour to be able to say a huge thank you to every one of the fantastic volunteers at the Stroke Association.

“This special weekend, as we celebrate the Platinum Jubilee, it is fitting to also take time to recognise the service of the amazing volunteers who are supporting stroke survivors and their families every day as they rebuild their lives after stroke.

“We are inspired by your dedication, commitment and care towards others, particularly those volunteers who have been so badly affected by stroke themselves.

“My best wishes and thanks to you all.”

For more information about volunteering opportunities at the Stroke Association visit www.stroke.org.uk/get-involved/volunteering