“Blokes With Strokes – Drysdale” is a support group for stroke survivors and meets in the men’s pavilion of a well-known Geelong person – past Geelong footballer, Doug Wade. Doug had a stroke early in 2015.
Doug and the “blokes” meet fortnightly at his place in Drysdale to talk about life after a stroke and ways to help with the many changes that may happen when a stroke occurs.
Numbers have grown and there are regularly at least 14 men in attendance. It’s been such a success, another “Blokes With Strokes” support group has recently started in Geelong.
“I enjoy being with people and helping them out. All of us who have had strokes would like to be better as we are limited now in many ways, but we can help others to be the best they can be and help them to cope.
The men are all different but we all have a sense of humor still. Since coming to the group some of the blokes are now trying golf, volunteering, meditation, gardening, bonsai and new exercise.
The things we talk about are not the things blokes normally do talk about.
Whatever is said in the group stays in the group which is because there is great trust there.
We welcome any new blokes warmly, while our partners have coffee and a chat in a nearby café and support one another in that way.” – Doug Wade
The topics and concerns they discuss include:
- Sharing experiences and solutions.
- How to explain to family and others what a stroke means and the different outcomes, and how to connect with those who do not understand, e.g. young children, grandchildren.
- What a stroke is, the different types of strokes, the impact and the likelihood of recovery or a reoccurrence.
- What the non-physical effects of a stroke are, how changes can be made, as well as how to develop coping skills and goals
- Role of carers and the support available for carers.
- Where to go after discharge from hospital/rehabilitation and the support available, including opportunities under the NDIS.
- Interests to take up, including volunteering opportunities.
- How to get further rehabilitation after being discharged from formal rehabilitation programs.
- Experience with emotions, e.g. frustration, fear, anxiety, apathy and anger
- Books and resources available.
For more information on the Drysdale or Geelong Blokes With Strokes support groups, please contact Barwon Stroke Support Centre.
Alternatively, if you’re interested in setting up a “Blokes With Strokes” support group in your area, please contact the Stroke Association of Victoria on (03) 9670-1117 or info@strokeasso