AT A GLANCE: Stroke Association unveils summer awareness drive

Is this an awareness campaign?
Yes, the Stroke Association will conduct around three weeks of comms activity from 7 July with two aims: to raise money for research into preven­tion, treatment and rehabili­tation, and to raise awareness of the severity of strokes – that a stroke is basically the brain’s version of a heart attack.

Will the association have agency support?
No, PR will be handled by the in-house team with media officer Angela Rowlands overseeing the campaign. Advertising agency Delaney Lund Knox Warren has been hired to prod­uce a press, radio, direct market­ing and digital campaign in July, how­ever. A viral element of the campaign is expected to last beyond next month.

What are the key campaign messages?
That stroke is third only to cancer and heart disease as a cause of death in England and Wales and 300,000 people live with moderate to severe disabilities as a result of stroke. Also, the association has calculated that it costs the economy £7bn every year in terms of health and social care. Comms will be aimed at women aged 45 to 64 , who the association says are the biggest charity donors in the UK.

What other activity is the organisation involved in?
It has just held its annual Life After Stroke awards. Celebrities such as Ronnie Corbett, Prunella Scales, Gail Porter and Neil Fox support the organ­isation.

Is this the only stroke charity?
Stroke Association is the only national charity to cater for all stroke sufferers. It also hosts the UK Stroke Forum, a collection of stakeholders which holds an annual conference in December. Although it is mainly a problem for older people, there are other organ­isations for different groups of sufferers – for example, younger people have the Different Strokes charity.

What’s the scale of the problem?
It’s pretty grim: more than 130,000 people in England and Wales have a stroke each year and about 10,000 of these are under retirement age. About a third are likely to die within the first ten days, a third recover within a month and a final third are likely to be left disabled and needing rehabilitation.

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