This is Archie basking in Deeside sunshine on 8 March 2015. He is wearing a purple Stroke Association neckerchief, because on 10 May 2015 he will be taking part in a Stroke Association Step Out for Stroke event on Aboyne Green here on Deeside. Yes, I know that there is another important date in May 2015 (more of this in a later post), but please read on…
Enthusiastic readers of this blog will remember that two years ago, our late whippet, Hamish, and I undertook a sponsored walk – Step Out for Stroke – at Glamis Castle in Angus. At the time, Hamish complained loudly about several aspects of the day: the long journey, the chilly breeze and the colour of the t-shirt he was forced to wear being just some of them. Perhaps he was feeling his age, as this proved to be his last major outing before his sad passing the following month. Thanks to the generosity of many friends, we raised almost £300 for the Stroke Association on that day. These are funds that go directly to supporting research into stroke and providing help for stroke survivors in Scotland and across the UK.
Last May, on a lovely sunny day, a similar event was held on Aboyne Green and a number of you supported this very generously. We also had great support from the Aboyne Rotary Club who provided stewards (and cakes) on the day. This year a further family day out will be held here on Deeside, because on the afternoon of 10 May 2015 another Step Out for Stroke event is being held on Aboyne Green. The funds raised will be shared equally between the Stroke Association and the Deeside Stroke Group, which holds a weekly exercise class for local stroke survivors in Aboyne and is supported and part-funded by the Stroke Association in Scotland.
Step Out for Stroke is a sponsored walk open to all ages and abilities, including wheelchair users. Well-behaved pets are welcome. Events are held all over the UK. You can choose to walk ten steps or a couple of miles. You can just turn up on the day – there’s a £5 registration fee – but even better, if you register in advance, you may be able to persuade friends and family to sponsor you to take part. You can register on-line by clicking here, or on Archie’s photo above, or if on-line is not your thing, you can register by post, by sending off a form available from the Stroke Association in Edinburgh (0131 555 7245). Because undiagnosed high blood pressure is a major cause of stroke, you can, if you wish, have your blood pressure taken by a trained volunteer at this event.
May is also Stroke Awareness month and the Stroke Association is encouraging everyone to make, bake, wear or do something purple that month. With one in six people of all ages in the UK suffering a stroke every year, this is a serious health issue which devastates lives and is a major cost to health and social care services. On Sunday 10 May, you can play a part in helping to defeat this dreadful condition, whether dressed in purple or not. I’ll be walking with my whippet, Archie, in tow. I’ll be joined by a number of people affected by stroke. Will you join us – again? If you can’t join us, but would like to donate, click here for Archie’s fund raising page. And that date again? 10 May 2015.