Different Strokes

We simply couldn’t function without our volunteers. We have only 6 part-time paid staff but we have 10 volunteers who work in the office and well over 100 more around the country. They are an integral and very important part of the organisation.

Why volunteer?
  • Practice and improve your skills in a supportive environment
  • Make new friends
  • Get motivated
  • Enjoy better mental and physical health
  • Enjoy new experiences and find new interests
  • Be part of your community
  • Feel useful and a sense of achievement
  • Give something back to others
  • Establish a routine
  • Boost your self-confidence and self-esteem
  • Feel less lonely and isolated
  • Send a positive signal to potential employers and family and friends
  • Take a step on the path towards paid work

We pay our volunteers’ expenses and provide training.

Current vacancies

Head Office

The Head Office in Milton Keynes has a variety of opportunities in general administration. We also have vacancies for younger stroke survivors to answer calls to the StrokeLine. Training is provided and we pay your expenses. Any regular commitment from half a day a week upwards is welcome. If you’re interested phone us on 01908 317618 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Caroline, Volunteer “I volunteered because I got so much support from Different Strokes I wanted to give something back. And I’m still getting something from Different Strokes – I love my job.”
- Caroline, Head Office Volunteer.
Andy, Volunteer “Stroke changed my life massively. NHS care was great in hospital but I felt let down by after care in the community. Volunteering for Different Strokes gives me a chance to try to make sure that others have a better experience.”
- Andy, Head Office Volunteer.
Exercise groups

We have around 45 exercise groups around the UK which are all organised by local volunteers with support from the Group Development Manager. Exercise groups are a really important part of our work, because they provide ongoing rehabilitation and improve fitness and also give an opportunity to meet other stroke survivors, share experiences and provide mutual support.

Is there an exercise group near you? If not why not start one? You’ll be providing a great service to other younger stroke survivors in your area. Ring Lorraine Ayres, the Group Development Manager, on 01908 317618 or 0345 130 7172 or email her This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and she’ll be pleased to tell you what’s involved.

Steve, Volunteer “This has been a rewarding and life enhancing experience for me, boosting my self-confidence and enabling me to make so many friends!”
- Steve, London East Group Co-ordinator.
Local Fundraising

There are so many ways to raise funds, and some of them are great fun too! Why not organise a dress down day at work, or persuade a local business or school to have one? Or a cake sale – everyone loves cakes! Could you find homes for our collection tins (pubs, shops and offices are good places) and empty them every so often? Get in touch on 01908 317618 or 0345 130 7172 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we’ll give you dozens more ideas (there’s bound to be something that appeals to you) and all the help you need.

Peter, Local fundraiser “I really enjoy fundraising for Different Strokes. I meet people and I get to raise awareness about stroke in younger people and what having a stroke is like”
- Peter, local fundraiser.

 

Volunteers Week 2017

20170602 volunteers week logo

 

Without our volunteers we would not reach and improve the lives of thousands of younger stroke survivors every year.

We wanted to share just some of our amazing volunteers stories and the impact that they have had on Different Strokes…

Mike Druce

“I saw an advert for Different Strokes in the Sunday Times 20 years ago when the charity first started up. A year earlier, when I was 32 years old, I had a massive brain haemorrhage and became paralysed down the right side of my body. I lost my speech, had my eyes fill up with blood and my short-term memory shot to hell - so I was relieved to find a stroke charity helping younger stroke survivors like myself.I became involved with Different Strokes shortly after I found the charity. I helped to set up DS in Coventry, I became a Trustee and later I was Chair of Different Strokes, until 2008 when I fell ill with Acute Myeloid Leukemia. Unfortunately I had to stop volunteering for DS.

In 2010 a few friends and I cycled from Land’s End to Oxhill (a village in Warwickshire) to help gain my strength back after the chemotherapy. I had my bike modified as my right side (especially my right hand) remained weak after my stroke. We did the 330 ride in support of DS and that helped me get my strength and confidence back.

In the Autumn 2015, I reconnected with Eileen (who was heading up DS) and she asked me to give them a hand with Different Stroke’s Social Media accounts including Different Strokes Charity Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. I said yes and soon discovered the potential of Pinterest.

Pinterest enabled me to create a large library of stroke information available to anyone in the world. I have amassed over 2,000 articles including information on exercise, rehabilitation, prevention, technology & research, neuroplasticity, childhood stroke, aphasia, practical coping tips, women and stroke, stroke survivor's stories, stroke news and so much more. In fact I believe we now have the largest stroke library on Pinterest!

Two of my favourite entries in our library are the Qi Gong Exercises and the Stroke Exercise Classes because they are relatively easy and convenient to do at home and I see great results!"

Our Pinterest library has been described as “excellent”, “fantastic”, “great” and “brilliant”. If you haven’t yet visited the DS Pinterest library, do so today! There are bound to be exercises that can help improve your movement, as well as survivor stories that will move you and practical tips that can make your life and the lives of your loved ones happier.


Meet More of Our Wonderful Volunteers!

Olga

Ileen Grant 4

Gullem

Joyce final

Different Strokes Central Services
9 Canon Harnett Court
Wolverton Mill
Milton Keynes MK12 5NF

Tel: 01908 317618 or 0345 130 7172
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.