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Volunteer Development Scotland Ltd. (also known as Volunteer Scotland).
Charity registered in Scotland SC013740 and a company limited by guarantee, registered in Scotland, No. SC106743. Our registered Office is Jubilee House, Forthside Way, Stirling. FK8 1QZ

Thomas Middlemass

Stroke Association

Hi, I'm Tom, and I'm 60 years old and I've been volunteering with the Stroke Association for over five years.

I had a stroke in 2016 which was life changing.

I couldn’t talk for three days, and this was tough on both me and my wife. We were scared. My mobility had been affected so I had to learn to walk again. Neither of us knew anything about stroke including the fact it can affect communication. I learnt how to walk quite quickly, but my speech has taken a lot longer to come back, and the confidence took ages to return. When I came across the Stroke Association two years after my stroke, I felt ready to take on a challenge. The charity was so friendly, and my skills were immediately made use of.

I am mainly involved in awareness activities, going along to events, and speaking to other stroke survivors like me. I have also spoken about my lived experience of stroke at events and with the media. As my confidence has grown, my volunteering activities have become varied and exciting.

There is so much that people need to know about stroke. Telling others about your lived experience makes it real to people, and by doing so I feel like I am making a difference. There are so many people who need to know about stroke and help make improvements to care. I would urge anyone to give volunteering with the Stroke Association a shot. It will make a positive difference to your life and to the lives of others.

Contact: to share your lived experience of stroke.