Let's talk about Stroke

Let's talk about Stroke

Development of a Stroke support group in South Manchester

Benefit of peer support groups

“Peer support” refers to a process through which people who share common experiences or face similar challenges come together as equals to give and receive help based on the knowledge that comes through shared experience. Peer support groups aim to improve the well-being of attendees by providing increased social connections with their peers. Fostering relationships among people can help prevent significant mental health problems such as major depression and debilitating anxiety or help to cope with long term illnesses such as dementia. Peer Support groups offer a reassuring, confidential and safe place to talk to others about how problems or situations affect their lives.


Currently this is taking place via Microsoft Teams and over the phone. Available for South Manchester residents.

Project team

The Stroke Association

Manchester Local Care Organisation – Health development Coordinators



Through having a conversation with a local resident, it was clear that there is a lack of community support for stroke survivors. We have started monthly gatherings for anyone affected by stroke. The overall aim of these gatherings is to build new relationships (and possibly a long term group) but also to gather stories to highlight the importance of services such as The Stroke Association.


“The group that is in place has been a good helping provide specific advice. There are a lot of commonalities but equally a lot of differences from each individual. The Stroke Association helped get my Dad into physio support that has helped him to walk again. We would not have known about that if it wasn’t for them and the monthly group”


Due to Covid restrictions this support has not yet been able to meet in person. The online meetings were useful, however it was difficult for people to chat and form relationships.

I am planning on picking this up again when restrictions are relaxed later on in the year.

Strategic links to local/national policies



Increased mental wellbeing

Manchester Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Greater Manchester Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Increased social connections

Manchester Population Health Plan

NHS Five Year Forward View (Department of Health, 2014)

Shared knowledge & experiences

Taking Charge of our Health and Social Care in Greater Manchester (GMCA, 2015)

Manchester’s Self-Care Strategy

Help with problems/disabilities

Healthy Lives, Healthy People (MH Government, 2010)

Taking Charge of our Health and Social Care in Greater Manchester (GMCA, 2015)

Manchester Prevention Programme

Lessen isolation and loneliness

Manchester Population Health Plan

NHS Five Year Forward View (Department of Health,2014)

Greater Manchester Age Friendly Strategy

Research/evidence base

Barak, A. (2008) Fostering empowerment in online support groups. Computers in Human Behavior, 24, 1867–83

DeLisle, V.C. (2016) Effect of support group peer facilitator training programmes on peer facilitator and support group member outcomes: a systematic review. BMJ Open. Nov 17;6(11):e013325.

Chung JE. (2013) Social Networking in Online Support Groups for Health: How Online Social Networking Benefits Patients. Journal of Health Communication, 0:1–21.
Turner KA. (2019) Effects of training and support programs for leaders of illness-based support groups: commentary and updated evidence. Systematic Reviews, Mar 5;8(1):67

Yi-Chia Wang Eliciting and receiving online support: using computer-aided content analysis to examine the dynamics of online social support. Journal of Medical Internet Research 2015 Apr 20;17(4):e99

Dosani S. Online groups and patient forums. Current Psychiatry Reports. 2014 Nov;16(11):507


Emma Farrell - buzz Neighbourhood Health Worker


T: 0161 271 0582

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“I started buzz's PARS pilates classes after I had a stroke, they have been amazing! These classes have continued on Microsoft Teams during lockdown.”

Local Wythenshawe resident attending PARS exercise classes