Woy Woy stroke survivor Brenda Booth, 59, is set to receive an Order of Australia Medal (OAM) for her outstanding contribution to helping raise awareness of stroke.
Brenda, who suffered a stroke in 2001, will receive the honour at Government House in Sydney on Thursday 5 September.
The timing coincides with National Stroke Week (September 2-8), which shines a spotlight on the disease across the nation.
Brenda has worked tirelessly in a voluntary capacity to improve the state of stroke at a national, state and local level. Brenda was an integral member of the Stroke Foundation Consumer Council helping drive the charity’s work, is involved in a local stroke support group, and raises awareness of stroke in the community through public speaking and advocacy.
Brenda said she was completely blown away and flattered to be receiving an OAM.
“It’s so important to effect change for the better, in direct care, rehabilitation, research, raising awareness and helping others to recognise the signs of stroke,” Brenda said.
New South Wales State Manager Rhian Paton-Kelly applauded Brenda’s achievement and her commitment to stemming the impact of stroke.
“Brenda has been a vital member of the Stroke Foundation for a number of years, and has had a huge impact on her community, raising awareness about the debilitating effects of stroke, and how it can be prevented,” Ms Paton-Kelly said.
“What a timely honour it is for Brenda too, receiving an OAM during Stroke Week.”
This National Stroke Week the theme is F.A.S.T. heroes, recognising the people who spotted the signs of stroke and called an ambulance straight away, potentially saving a life.
Brenda is encouraging everyone to be aware of the F.A.S.T (Face, Arms, Speech, Time) signs.
“If my Mum hadn’t recognised my signs and quickly called an ambulance, I think my outcome would have been very different,” she said.
Stroke is one Australia’s biggest killers and a leading cause of disability.
There will be around 500 strokes in the Robertson electorate this year, and almost 4000 stroke survivors are living in the community.