‘Live Life to the Full’ Campervan Challenge

Spurred on by last years Gold Post Box challenge, where we travelled the country in an attempt to raise awareness of Brain Aneurysms and Subarachnoid Haemorrhage, this year, we’re off again and we would like you to follow our journey and adventures to help more raise awareness of this life threatening condition!

It would mean SO MUCH to us if you could help us raise funds for Southampton Neurological Hospital into important research into this horrible silent killer.  Please donate!

If you followed our Gold Post Box Challenge, you will know that we met in March 2016 after being brought together, following tragic circumstances.  Since then we have become inseparable and the best of friends!

Lisa’s mum suddenly died of a Subarachnoid Haemorrhage (SAH) in June 2012 after suffering a sudden severe headache, which was misdiagnosed as a migraine.

Later, in January 2016, Michelle was later suddenly struck down with the same condition after experiencing a sudden, severe headache, which felt like someone had hit her over the back of the head with a baseball bat.  Thankfully, Michelle was diagnosed in time and rushed to Southampton Neurological Hospital for the emergency treatment that saved her life.

NHS statistics show that approximately 3 out of 5 people who suffer from a SAH die within 2 weeks. Half of those who survive are usually left with brain damage or disability, so it is an extreme medical emergency and needs more awareness so that more lives can be saved.

Having faced such terrifying and tragic life-changing circumstances has given us a close friendship and bond that most people probably don’t understand.  It has also given us a sense of the true value of life.

Life is not about the possessions and materials things, it is the simple and honest things in life that matter most and which bring us most happiness.  Family, friendship, companionship and enjoying all of the beautiful things that life has to offer…

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…Simple things like sitting on a beach and watching the sunset, marvelling at a beautiful landscape and immersing yourself in the feeling of freedom as you hear and feel the elements of  the wind and rain which make you feel truly alive!

So, we both decided we need MORE of this in our lives, to celebrate simply being ALIVE!! (Something many of us take for granted).

To achieve this, we have invested in a campervan (Tilly the Toyota!) and we have set ourselves the challenge to see us much of this beautiful little island as we can over the next 12 months!

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Please join us on our journey and adventures to see how much of this ‘Scratch out map” we can cover over the next 12 months!

Please follow and share our journey and don’t forget to donate to Southampton Neurological Hospital, which is the hospital that did so much to save Lisa’s Mum and who saved Michelle’s life.

More lives could be saved with more awareness and more research into the condition.

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Rio Dedication for Brain Aneurysm Awareness Crusade

TWO campaigners have had their Health Awareness Crusade backed by Paralympian Gold Medalist, Megan Giglia in Rio!

One of Team GB’s Gold Medalists at the Rio Paralympics is dedicating each of her Paralympics rides to individuals and their families who are currently dealing with the after effects of stroke.

Megan Giglia, who won Britain’s first gold medal at the Rio Paralympics, suffered a stroke and brain haemorrhage aged 27, due to a ruptured Brain Aneurysm.

Now Megan is flying the flag, not only for Team GB, but also for other Stroke and Brain Aneurysm Patients and their families.

On Thursday Megan dedicated her Gold Medal Victory to 10 year old Alasdair Rowan, who was diagnosed with a Brain Aneurysm/AVM.

Today Megan’s ride was dedicated to Michelle Williams and Lisa Slaymaker who have been campaigning to raise more awareness of Brain Aneurysms and Subarachnoid Haemorrhage, a less common, but often more deadly form of stroke.

Writing on her instagram page before the race, Megan said: “Tomorrow is the 500mm Time Trial Final.  It is a fast race which is over in a flash.  In that short space of time every moment counts, it can be won or lost in the blink of an eye. To me such a race symbolises how lives can be lost and changed in seconds.”

Megan continued: “I am dedicating this race to two amazing women that are on a crusade of their very own to raise more awareness about Brain Aneurysms and Subarachnoid Haemorrhages. Lisa Slaymaker and Michelle Williams (soul sisters) this one’s for you.”

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Michelle and Lisa met after Michelle’s story was published on her experience of suffering a ruptured brain aneurysm in January 2016, which led to the 47-year-old requiring life-saving Brain Surgery.
Lisa’s mother passed away suddenly in 2012 after suffering from the same condition and she contacted Michelle to praise her fighting spirit.
Since meeting just 6 months ago, the pair have become firm friends and have been working together to help raise more awareness of this life threatening neurological condition.
During Megan’s post-race TV Interview, she said; “Lisa and Michelle have both suffered at the heart of Stroke and Brain Aneurysms (a bleed on the brain) as well as members of their family and they are doing their own challenge in trying to raise more awareness, so in my eyes they deserve as much as anyone to be out here and be dedicated to.”

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Paralympian brings Campaigners Crusade to Rio!

TWO Basingstoke campaigners have had their crusade backed by a Paralympian who is set to dedicate one of her races in Rio to their cause.

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Michelle Williams and Lisa Slaymaker, the duo behind a campaign urging the Government to back a nationwide Brain Aneurysm Awareness Month, received support from Team GB Cyclist Megan Giglia, a survivor of this life threatening condition.

Megan will dedicate a race in honour of Michelle and Lisa’s Soul Sisters campaign when she takes to the Rio velodrome next week.

“Lisa and I feel overwhelmed and honoured to have the support of Megan,” Michelle told us. “It means so much to have the support and backing of anyone impacted by brain aneurysms and subarachnoid haemorrhage, but even more so to have the support of Megan because we found her whole story of survival and recovery so inspiring.”

“The fact Megan is now representing Team GB at the Paralympics is wonderful.

It is so motivational and inspiring, not only for us in our fight to raise more awareness about the condition, but also for all other brain aneurysms victims and survivors.”

Michelle added: “Megan said she would like to dedicate the 500m TT sprint to us, as she says it is such a quick race that it symbolizes how lives can be lost and changed in seconds with a ruptured Brain Aneurysm and Subarachnoid Haemorrhage.”

A ruptured Brain Aneurysm is a Life Threatening Condition, which NHS statistics show is fatal in around 60% of cases. About 3 in 5 people who suffer a subarachnoid haemorrhage die within two weeks. Half of those that survive are left with severe brain damage and disability.

Michelle and Lisa met after The Basingstoke Gazette published Michelle’s story on her experience of suffering a ruptured brain aneurysm, which led to the 47-year-old business owner requiring life-saving Brain Surgery.

Lisa’s mother passed away suddenly in 2012 after suffering from the same condition and she contacted Michelle to praise her fighting spirit.

Currently the pair are on a quest to visit each golden postbox, awarded to every gold medal winning Olympian and Paralympian at London 2012. From each Postbox they are sending letters to Politicians, Heads of NHS and Specialists in the field of Neuroscience encouraging support for their campaign.

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Megan told the Soul Sisters: “You ladies are doing an amazing thing and I will back you in anyway possible. I love the gold postbox theme and I would like to dedicate one on my rides to you and hopefully help spread the word about your mission.”

To learn more about Michelle and Lisa’s campaign visit soulsistersuk.com or  www.facebook.com/SoulSistersUK/

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Brain Aneurysm – Gold Post Box Challenge, Chiswick, London

Michelle and Lisa have visited the Chiswick Gold Post Box in their Gold Post Box Challenge, as part of their mission to raise Brain Aneurysm Awareness.

The pair have set themselves a challenge to visit every Gold Post Box in England before 25th 2016, from where they will be petitioning the Government to introduce a Brain Aneurysm Awareness Day

From here they sent a Postcards to Leading Consultant Neurologists at the Walton Centre and the Regional Neurosciences Centre, asking for their help in raising more awareness about Brain Aneurysms and Subarachnoid Haemorrhage and calling for their support in petitioning the Government to introduce a  Brain Aneurysm Awareness Day.

 

The pair met after The Basingstoke Gazette published Michelle’s story on her experience of suffering a ruptured Brain Aneurysm, which led to the 47 year old business woman requiring life-saving surgery.
Lisa’s Mother passed away in 2012, after suffering from the same condition and she contacted Michelle to praise her fighting spirit.  Since then the two girls have become firm friends and are committed to raising more awareness of this silent killer so that more lives can be saved.
If you would like to help Lisa and Michelle in their bid to raise more awareness about Brain Aneurysms and Subarachnoid Haemorrhage, please sign the petition  and help to raise important funds for research being carried out Southampton University Hospital.
If you or a family member has been affected by Brain Aneurysms andSubarachnoid Haemorrhage, please join our Gold Post Box Crusade, by visiting your own local Gold Post box and sending a letter to your MP asking for their help and support in introducing a Brain Aneurysm Awareness Day.  You can find your most local Gold Post Box here!
Please don’t forget to send your Gold Post Box Pictures and Stories to our Soul Sisters UK Facebook Page.
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Brain Aneurysm – Gold Post Box Challenge, Westminster, London

Michelle and Lisa have visited London to the Gold Post Box in Westminster in their Gold Post Box Challenge, as part of their mission to raise Brain Aneurysm Awareness.

A great day in Westminster. Thank you all for your support.

  • 60% fatality rate
  • 3 in 5 people that suffer a SAH die within 2 weeks
  • 1/2 of those that survive are left with severe brain damage and disability
  • and the remaining are left with ‘invisible brain injury’ and that affect them for the rest of their life relating to problems with certain mental functions, such as memory, planning and concentration, headaches, insomnia and extreme near-fatigue.

A new report published by the Neurological Alliance has found that GPs in England lack confidence in the primary care pathway for people with neurological conditions.

  • 85% of GPS in England are either ‘somewhat concerned’ or ‘extremely concerned’ about the time taken from referral for patients to see a consultant neurologist
  • 59% of GPs believe that the local services and systems in place in their area mean that people with neurological conditions frequently do not receive a timely diagnosis.
  • The large majority of GPs in England (84%) feel that they could benefit from further training on identifying and managing people presenting with neurological conditions.
  • Fewer than half of GPs (47%) felt confident in their ability to make an initial assessment and referral for people presenting with signs and symptoms of multiple sclerosis.

Arlene Wilkie, CEO of the Neurological Alliance, said: “It is essential that NHS England and the Department of Health respond to these findings and engage with the concerns of GPs and people living with neurological conditions. Without an effective pathway through primary care, patients will continue to suffer the consequences of undue delays to referral, diagnosis and treatment, and outcomes will continue to suffer.”

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BBC Radio Interview – BBC Radio Berkshire

Soul Sisters, Lisa and Michelle were delighted to be invited to BBC Radio Berkshire on 14th August by Presenter, Debbie McGee, to talk about their Brain Aneurysm Awareness Campaign and Gold Post Box Challenge.

 

The pair were extremely grateful to Debbie for showing such great interest in their Brain Aneurysm Awareness campaign, particularly after loosing her husband, Paul Daniels, so recently to a neurological condition.

During the interview Michelle and Lisa had the opportunity to discuss their own experiences of Brain Aneurysms and Subarachnoid Haemorrhage and the reason why they believe more awareness of the conditions and it’s sudden signs and symptoms are vital.

Please sign and share the petition to introduce a Brain Aneurysm Awareness Day. We need 100,000 signatures by 25th August 2016 for the petition to be considered for debate in parliament.

Please then share this blog post and the petition to help us raise more awareness about Brain Aneurysms and Subarachnoid Haemorrhage.

This is an extremely serious neurological condition, which NHS statistics show is fatal in around 60% of cases. About three in five people who suffer a subarachnoid haemorrhage die within two weeks and half of those who survive are left with severe brain damage and disability.

If you or a family member has been affected by this condition, please join our Gold Post Box Crusade by posting a letter to your local MP from your own most local Gold Post Box, stating why more awareness is vital.  Please then send your Gold Post Box Photos and Stories to our Soul Sisters UK Facebook Page. 

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Brain Aneurysm – Gold Post Box Challenge #11 &12, Wimbledon, London

Michelle and Lisa have visited the 11th and 12th Gold Post Boxes in their Gold Post Box Challenge, as part of their mission to raise Brain Aneurysm Awareness.

The pair have set themselves a challenge to visit every Gold Post Box in England before 25th 2016, from where they will be petitioning the Government to introduce a Brain Aneurysm Awareness Day.

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The first Gold Post Box they visited in Wimbledon, was for Tennis Champion, Andy Murray, just outside The All England Croquet and Lawn Tennis Club, before the duo moved on to the 2nd Gold Post Box in Wimbledon for Olympian Rower, Sophie Hosking.

From here they sent a Postcards to Leading Consultant Neurologists at the Walton Centre and the Regional Neurosciences Centre, asking for their help in raising more awareness about Brain Aneurysms and Subarachnoid Haemorrhage and calling for their support in petitioning the Government to introduce a  Brain Aneurysm Awareness Day.

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The pair met after The Basingstoke Gazette published Michelle’s story on her experience of suffering a ruptured Brain Aneurysm, which led to the 47 year old business woman requiring life-saving surgery.
Lisa’s Mother passed away in 2012, after suffering from the same condition and she contacted Michelle to praise her fighting spirit.  Since then the two girls have become firm friends and are committed to raising more awareness of this silent killer so that more lives can be saved.
If you would like to help Lisa and Michelle in their bid to raise more awareness about Brain Aneurysms and Subarachnoid Haemorrhage, please sign the petition  and help to raise important funds for research being carried out Southampton University Hospital.
If you or a family member has been affected by Brain Aneurysms and Subarachnoid Haemorrhage, please join our Gold Post Box Crusade, by visiting your own local Gold Post box and sending a letter to your MP asking for their help and support in introducing a Brain Aneurysm Awareness Day.  You can find your most local Gold Post Box here!
Please don’t forget to send your Gold Post Box Pictures and Stories to our Soul Sisters UK Facebook Page.
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Brain Aneurysm – Gold Post Box Challenge Uxbridge, Buckinghamshire

Michelle and Lisa have visited the Uxbridge Gold Post Box in their Gold Post Box Challenge, as part of their mission to raise Brain Aneurysm Awareness.

A great day in Uxbridge visiting their gold Post Box. Michelle’s friend sadly passed away due to a ruptured brain aneurysm 3 years ago. Thank you all for your support.

  • 60% fatality rate
  • 3 in 5 people that suffer a SAH die within 2 weeks
  • 1/2 of those that survive are left with severe brain damage and disability
  • and the remaining are left with ‘invisible brain injury’ and that affect them for the rest of their life relating to problems with certain mental functions, such as memory, planning and concentration, headaches, insomnia and extreme near-fatigue.

A new report published by the Neurological Alliance has found that GPs in England lack confidence in the primary care pathway for people with neurological conditions.

  • 85% of GPS in England are either ‘somewhat concerned’ or ‘extremely concerned’ about the time taken from referral for patients to see a consultant neurologist
  • 59% of GPs believe that the local services and systems in place in their area mean that people with neurological conditions frequently do not receive a timely diagnosis.
  • The large majority of GPs in England (84%) feel that they could benefit from further training on identifying and managing people presenting with neurological conditions.
  • Fewer than half of GPs (47%) felt confident in their ability to make an initial assessment and referral for people presenting with signs and symptoms of multiple sclerosis.

Arlene Wilkie, CEO of the Neurological Alliance, said: “It is essential that NHS England and the Department of Health respond to these findings and engage with the concerns of GPs and people living with neurological conditions. Without an effective pathway through primary care, patients will continue to suffer the consequences of undue delays to referral, diagnosis and treatment, and outcomes will continue to suffer.”

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we NEED you for Brain Aneurysm Awareness!

EVERYONE!!! Please sign and share our petition to introduce a Brain Aneurysm Awareness Day. We need 10,000 signatures by 24th August, so we haven’t got long and we NEED your help!!!

For any Survivors or people who have lost a loved one to Brain Aneurysms and Subarachnoid Haemorrhage, please meet us a the Westminster Gold Post Box in London on Sunday 7th August, 3pm, for a Publicity Day.

The address is: Tothill Street, Westminster, London, SW1H 9LH.

If you can’t meet us, please visit your own most local Gold Post Box.  From there take a photograph of yourself sending a letter to your local MP explaining your own personal experiences of Brain Aneurysms and Subarachnoid Haemorrhage and why there needs to be more awareness about this devastating life-threatening condition.

Enter your postcode at the link below to find your most local Gold Post Box: https://www.hopewiser.com/proximity-postboxes/

THEN post up your Gold Post Box Photo’s and Stories here:
https://www.facebook.com/SoulSistersUK/