CHSS Fights for No Life Half Lived in Scotland
Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland (CHSS), the charity that wants to reach the 1 in 5 with chest, heart and stroke conditions, has this week launched a new vision; No Life Half Lived. CHSS has an ambition that everyone in Scotland gets the care and support they need, when and where they need it.
There are over one million people in Scotland living with the effects of serious chest and heart conditions and stroke. Most people will not have access to the support or rehabilitation services that would help them live healthier lives and CHSS want to change that. By 2021 they will double the number of people they reach by launching the No Life Half Lived Rehabilitation Support Service, and increase the support available through their specialist nurses, community groups, advice and information.
Jane-Claire Judson, Chief Executive CHSS said, “We want to help people breathe better. We want people’s hearts to work as well as they can. We want to make sure that everyone has the best recovery they can after a stroke.”
Everyone’s reality is different. Hollie is 22. In 2016 she had a stroke. She also has cystic fibrosis. After a year of hospital treatment, Hollie thought she’d never leave the house again. Her stroke affected her speech, reading and writing and she lost the feeling in the right hand side of her body.
Hollie explained, “I was too scared to leave the house and didn’t want to speak to anyone in public. I started to withdraw from the world. It didn’t feel safe.”
Then Hollie met Wendy Lead Co-ordinator Rehabilitation Support, Grampian from Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland. Wendy supported her in regaining her confidence by starting with small steps like phone calls so that Hollie had the courage to speak to people out with her family. Eventually Hollie was able to leave the house and go out and enjoy tea and cake in a café again.
Hollie continued, “It was such a big fear but I was able to face it with Wendy. I began to realise people could understand me and began to get my independence back. I don’t think Wendy knows just how much she helped me.”
CHSS’s new strategy, No Life Half Lived, will address the unmet needs of people who are living with their conditions – social, emotional and physical – across Scotland’s communities.
Commenting on their new vision, Jane-Claire said, “Every single day in Scotland there are people and families whose worlds are being turned upside down after a diagnosis of chest or heart condition or a stroke. Many people can experience fear and isolation and are struggling from the impact on their lives. Not everyone is getting the care and support they need. We won’t stand for that.”
Jane-Claire continued, “For many of the people that we support, every day activities such as picking up a knife and fork, making a cup of tea or leaving the house can feel like a massive challenge. We want to make sure life with chest, heart or stroke conditions is a life lived to the full!”
“In order to meet this need and ensure no life half lived in Scotland we need to double our income, double the number of our volunteers and double the amount of people through our services”
From as little as £8 you can support someone like Hollie. For more information on how you can help support no life half lived in Scotland visit our website: www.chss.org.uk/donate