A Little History


We are autonomous 'seasoned 'strokees who realize the benefit of social interaction with our peers. Through years of experience, by osmosis Strokees benefit from collaborative self management.

Progress and knowledge in stroke prevention, awareness, reversal, rehabilitation and recovery in recent years is astounding. Everyday we hear something new. Less common is news about long term stroke life. What happens for the people five years post stroke? What's out there for them? There are some, but few available options.

The System

The healthcare system, science and medicine acknowledge the void.  Longterm Stroke Survivors, their family and friends definitely experience the need for resources. Programs are difficult to promote for a demographic with such poor statistics showing no upward movement in the eyes of society.

Rehabilitation after stroke has enormous costs to Healthcare. It makes sense to target new strokes when the most gain can be achieved. Once plateaued, survivors don't need facilities with the latest tech and the most educated people to maintain quality of life. We need low cost venues for people unable to return to their normal lifestyle. Places where they can create and establish a new position in their community.

BLAST Family

In 2011 our small group held its first annual event dubbed BLAST. Easter long weekend Stroke Survivors "Building Life After Stroke Together" gathered to live and learn from each other. Proudly we were surprised with the creation of our successful event. It was magical! More important, we did it ourselves.

Summer of 2013 we began getting together for dinner on the 15th of each month. It’s open to anyone. Drop in and pay your own. It continues at Trocaderos in Vancouver. Regulars travel from Langley, Delta, Coquitlam, and elsewhere. This is an ideal type of situation to set up. No cost and minimal time, just piggyback an activity in existing public venus.

Down and shut out

The week following Easter 2017, SRABC branch, Templeton Stroke Recovery unexpectedly shut its doors. This was home for the BLAST family core who met Thursdays for over 20 years. Shocked and devastated we scrambled and fortunately welcomed in the Britannia 55+ Drop in Center. 

At Christmas we learned that the BC Lions Society was closing Squamish Easter seals camp. They cashed our deposit in September 2017 and refunded it January 2018. We needed to find a new accessible location for Easter, March 19, 2018. Fortunately we found Zajac Ranch for children.

A new door opens

In February, I went to meet a new camper, Michael D. He had just moved in to a new building at 1st Ave and Victoria Dr, close to where I live.  Immediately I’m drawn to the large open room and cozy sitting area. At first glance, I didn't think it could work for us. We like to sing, dance, laugh and make noise which would be a disturbance without any doors to shut.   

The building is Co:Here, built by the Salsbury Society. Michael was adamant that I look further into meeting there. Co:Here is a wonderful place to have in our community. I am impressed by the building, it's people, and the philosophy behind it. We decided to give it a try and invite the residents to join us. He was right.  It’s a great fit.

The space is available to us because it is hosted by Michael. Co:Here supports their residents and he wants our group to use the facilities. Michael is aphasic (no speech) and uses a powerchair. It’s quite remarkable that he was able to bring us together. His stroke is young in the realm of turtles. I am sure one day he will stand up and tell the story.

A couple months later other residents have stepped up to co-host so even in Michael’s absence, it feels like we have a new home .