American Stroke Month
Each year, stroke kills more than 130,000 Americans annually—that’s 1 out of every 20 deaths. Someone in the United States has a stroke every 40 seconds, and every 4 minutes, someone dies of one. Here are some other numbers to consider, courtesy of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:
- Every year, more than 795,000 people in the United States have a stroke. About 610,000 of these are first or new strokes; about 185,00 strokes—nearly 1 of 4—are in people who have had a previous stroke.
- In 2009, 34% of people hospitalized for stroke were less than 65 years old.
- Stroke costs the United States an estimated $33 billion each year.
In recognition of American Stroke Month, we’ve compiled a few of the many nonprofits working to provide education and assistance to stroke victims and their loved ones:
Founded in 1996, the Aphasia Center of California was the first independent nonprofit organization in the United States to provide treatment to individuals with aphasia. It is dedicated to helping families and stroke survivors understand the ramifications of aphasia on their daily lives and to improving the quality of life for all affected.
“In 1996, my husband had a stroke at age 52 and attended Conversation Groups at the newly opened Aphasia Center of California. He received assistance with reading and writing, and participated in the Book Club, and continues to enjoy listening to books on tape. For me, the Caregiver Support Group was a lifesaver, learning how to live in a stressful situation, not knowing how much recovery would occur, trying to assist with reading and writing therapy and take care of myself too. We both have been active since then, participating in fundraising and anniversary events, and I have been on the board of directors since 2003. This organization provides incredible services to survivors with a disability that affects millions of people, yet is virtually unknown.”
La Crosse, Wis.
Founded in 2005, the APS Foundation of America is the only U.S. nonprofit health agency dedicated to bringing national awareness to Antiphospholipid Antibody Syndrome (APS), the major cause of multiple miscarriages, thrombosis, young strokes, and heart attacks.
“After being diagnosed in 2008 with APS, the APS foundation of America helped me get information and resources to help live with this deadly disease. I am so very thankful for APSFA, without their education and support, they have helped me so much with my quality of life! It’s amazing that connecting with others that struggle with APS, many of us feel no longer alone, but yet part of a family, providing support and love to each other!”
The Kentuckiana Stroke Association is dedicated to the prevention of stroke through education and awareness. Since 1999, it has educated more than 16,000 people on the dangers of stroke.
“I am both a client served and a volunteer. My husband had a massive stroke 12 years ago and his health journey has been a constant roller coaster ride. The stroke association has offered help and guidance, but most important of all they are a compassionate heart that listens. The role of caregiver is often as difficult as being the patient. I know firsthand you cannot handle it alone. The doctors and medical community can only give your so much support. The patient and caregiver both need emotional as well as physical support. I know when my husband has a new issue or need the Kentuckiana Stroke Association will know where to send me. And when I am tired and overwhelmed they are always there to support me.”
To learn more about these organizations and many others just like them that work to assist stroke victims, please check out GreatNonprofits.