Stroke-a-Chord is a choir composed of stroke survivors with aphasia (loss of speech after stroke). The members can sing even though they cannot speak. The choir first sang at a performance for family and friends in September 2010. Over 160 people attended and the choir members reported increased self confidence and improved self esteem as a consequence of this successful performance.

The Stroke-a-Chord choir made their official public debut performance on 17 September 2011 to a sold out crowd at the Karralyka Centre in Ringwood, and have continued to perform each year since. By performing in public the choir members will experience further increased self esteem and improved social communicative interaction which both contribute to improved quality of life.

Performances provide positive emotional experiences, are invaluable opportunities for self expression and they “showcase” the stroke survivors developing abilities in music and singing.

Benefits will be felt by choir members and by friends, family and carers of stroke survivors as they see their choir member active, happy, and participating fully and equally in a creative event.

There will also be benefits for others through raised awareness about stroke specifically and disability in general (particularly communication difficulties). This will lead to increased awareness of stroke prevention and greater community inclusion for people with disabilities. It is also expected that there will be benefits to the Arts Community with awareness and inclusion of diverse populations in mainstream Art and Culture.

Funding will be used to employ a Music Therapist who will work with a team of stroke specialists to elicit best performance from each choir member. Evaluations will occur after each performance…