Community Help

Community support and help


There are many ways to get help, support, and advice around the community.


Living with stroke

A stroke can be a sudden, life-changing event for the person it happens to and those around them. Whilst the consequences can be devastating, people do recover and learn to live with the loss of some functioning where this has occurred.

Your best chance of recovering from a stroke is getting medical help early, being patient as functions return, accessing a good rehabilitation programme and keeping motivated, even if progress seems slow.

Our stroke information section has more about strokes, and we also have many printed resources available to help you live with stroke. A series of videos giving practical information and tips about performing daily activities such as dressing, putting on make-up or coping with a baby can be watched online here.

We encourage those affected by stroke to contact our regional staff and ask to talk with a Community Stroke Advisor. This is a free and confidential service.


Advice, Support and Services 

The links below provide a directory of sources of help, advice, and services in the community, with internet links for contact details, further information, and services available online.

If you would like to add a service to the list or want to inform us of broken links please contact Please note that in general we can't list individual therapy practices or individual commercial facilities such as gyms, but we can list directories or professional associations which publicise such services.


Advance care planning



Advance Care Planning (or ACP) is the process of thinking about, talking about, and planning for future health care and end of life care.

ACP Cooperative

ACP resources

Age Concern – What happens if you can no longer make decisions?

Leaflet explaining Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA) (pdf)

Alzheimers NZ

About Alzheimers

Enduring Power of Attorney – Protect your future

Office for Senior Citizens (Ministry of Social Development)






Aphasia New Zealand Charitable Trust

Services, support, education, information, and advocacy for New Zealanders with Aphasia

Aphasia Hubs (support meetings) in Auckland, Hamilton, Tauranga, Taupo, Wellington, Paraparaumu, Christchurch and Dunedin; other meetings and support for people with aphasia in Dunedin, Tauranga, Palmerston North/Manawatu, Lower Hutt, Nelson, Christchurch and Rodney.

contact details

Aphasia Software Finder

The Aphasia Software Finder is a website providing links to a huge variety of software and apps for personal computers, smartphones and tablets to help people with different forms of aphasia communicate. Almost every page now has a video explaining how to use the page for people who may have difficulty reading the text. Software is arranged under different categories and indication is given of where the software is free or if there is a cost. The site is created by the Tavistock Trust for Aphasia (UK).

Links to software and apps 

Aphasia training at home online

Rotorua Aphasia Group: Stroke Foundation of New Zealand

Contact details from Vivienne McDonald (Rotorua Community Stroke Advisor)

Virtual Speech Center (USA)

Suite of aphasia and related apps (currently for Apple devices only - prices are in US$)


Aspire Canterbury



Aspire Canterbury

Aspire Canterbury



Carer information and support



Accredited Home Visiting Service

Home Visiting

Alzheimer's Association

Caregiver Stress Check

Alzheimers NZ

About Alzheimers (pdf)

Carers New Zealand

Carers New Zealand website

Practical tips for helping someone with moving or handling

Supporting people to move at home (pdf)

Caring Caller Service

Caller Service

A Guide for Carers

Ministry of Social Development

Information for carers and downloadable booklet


Helpline for any older person, friend or family member who: wants to stay at home; is caring for an older person at home; or is considering rest home / hospital care.

0800 725 463 or

Stroke4Carers (UK based, but with helpful advice for carers)

Stroke4Carers website

Family and stroke – when your parent or someone you love has a stroke. Support for rangatahi and tamariki.

Family and stroke



Education support services for students



Advice and information


Study link

Study Link website

NZ Youth Network Ara Taiohi

Ara Taiohi disability resources


Ministry of Education

Early Intervention service information

Kiwi Families

Information and advice

Primary and secondary students

Ministry of Education

Special Education disability service

Tertiary students - facilities which have a disability services unit

Victoria University of Wellington

Disability Services website

University of Auckland

Student Disability Services

AUT University

Disability Student Support

Massey University

Support for students registered with Disability Services

University of Otago

Disability Information and Support

University of Canterbury

Disability Resource Service

Lincoln University

Inclusive Education: Support for illness, injury, and disability



Help with communicating and speaking



Also see ‘Aphasia’ above


Christchurch Stroke Club speech-language therapy sessions, Stroke Foundation of New Zealand

Contact details from Stroke Foundation Southern Region office


Volunteer speech-language therapists, Waitemata DHB Speech Language Therapy

About the service

New Zealand Speech-language Therapists’ Association


Managing your health



Health Navigator

Continence NZ

Useful information for people whose independence is limited by bladder and bowel problems

Continence NZ website

Can’t wait card


Read more in our ‘Stroke and Depression’ section

Electronic system to self-manage your healthcare 

ecare website

Fatigue after stroke

Read our fact sheet ‘Fatigue after stroke

Health Passport

Health and Disability Commissioner

Health Passport - Information

Health Passport (pdf)

Let’s P.L.A.N. for better care – Four steps for your next health care visit

Health Quality & Safety Commission New Zealand

P.L.A.N flyer - PDF download

Medication and Stroke

Read our fact sheet ‘Medication and Stroke

Super Seniors

Ministry for Social Development

Health, finance, recreation, and miscellaneous information for superannuitants


Māori networks



Auahi kore

Quitting smoking support

Auahi Kore website

Māori health providers

Ministry of Health

Māori Health Provider Directory

Providers of cultural and social services in each area – Takoa

Takoa website

Information and support for Māori whānau with communication difficulties caused by stroke

Communication after stroke


Other community services and resources



Auckland Health Services

AHS provide medical equipment hire for private and commercial clients alike. We have an extensive range of health support and rehabilitation equipment that includes, but is not limited to wheelchairs, walking frames, shower stools, commodes, rehabilitation chairs and exercycles. The friendly team at AHS ensure reliable and efficient coordination of equipment delivery and collection and are happy to assist with any queries relating to your equipment.

Auckland Health Services

Citizens Advice Bureau

Citizens Advice Bureau website

Counselling and support services

Skylight website

Health and disability advice and support

Ministry of Health website

Ministry of Health NZ website

Ministry of Health Healthline

Healthline information

Disability Resource Centre Trust

Disability Resource Centre Trust website

Independent Living Service (ILS)

Independent Living Service website

Information, support, and learning centres for older adults

Age Concern

Age Concern website

Senior Line

Senior Line website

Senior Net

Senior Net website

Injury cover and prevention

Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC)

ACC website

Local Council libraries and other facilities

National Library of New Zealand

Directory of New Zealand Libraries (to contact local library)

Local Council websites

Directory of local councils

Support for the New Zealand dementia community

Alzheimers New Zealand

Alzheimers New Zealand website

Work and Income

Work and Income

Work and Income website


Workbridge website

Ministry of Social Development

Ministry of Social Development website





Other languages health information



Ethnic Affairs community directory

The Office of Ethnic Communities

Stroke information in other languages

Health information including Blood Pressure advice in different languages

Medline Plus (USA)

Online information in a variety of languages: Arabic, Bosnian, Chinese (Simplified and Traditional), French, Hindi, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, Somali, Spanish, Tagalog (Filipino), Ukrainian and Vietnamese.

Online information (web pages only, not pdfs)

Stroke Foundation (Australia)

Australian Stroke Foundation fact sheet 'What is stroke' in both pdf and audio MP3 formats in Arabic, Chinese (Mandarin), Greek, Italian, Macedonian, Turkish and Vietnamese.

American Stroke Association (USA)

Various fact sheets about stroke, stroke prevention and life after stroke in Spanish.



Pacific networks



Pacific health providers

Pacific Peoples Health

Pacific health organisations and websites (Ministry of Health)

Pacific Island Affairs links

Ministry of Pacific Island Affairs

Information for Pacific peoples

Quitline Pacific Campaign

Quit smoking campaign targeted at Pacific smokers

Vaka Tautua

Health and Disability Support Services for Pacific people

Vaka Tautua website

Your guide to Disability Support Services (PDF in different languages) from Le Va

Cook Island Maori







Words Matter: Disability

Positive Samoan, Tongan and Cook Island words or phrases to use to describe disabilities or people with a disability, and a reminder about negative words which should be avoided.

Words Matter: Disability in Samoan, Cook Islands and Tongan languages with English translations



Recreational activities



Art Therapy

Art Therapy

Community groups for men to develop skills

Menz Shed

Menz Shed info on MSD Super Seniors

Computer training for senior adults

Senior Net

Senior Net website


Be Accessible

Horse Riding

New Zealand Riding for the Disabled (NZRDA)

Music therapy

Music Therapy New Zealand website

Cantabrainers Choir

Cantabrainers choir

CeleBRation Choir

Information from the University of Auckland Centre for Brain Research

Sport NZ

Regional sports trusts directory

Green Prescription

Green Prescription

Halberg Foundation

Halberg Foundation

Parafed Auckland

Parafed Auckland

Super Seniors

Ministry for Social Development

Recreation, finance, health and miscellaneous information for superannuitants

Swimming - local council swimming pool facilities 

Directory of local councils



Rehabilitation programmes and support



Specific to regions (following discharge from hospital)


Stroke rehabilitation Service search

Stroke support in Canterbury

Laura Fergusson Trust (Canterbury)

Bridges Stroke Programme for Stroke survivors



Resources for children



kidstrokemotion (Australia)

A project to collect drawings and personal stories from children of stroke survivors and turn them into a kid-focused animation and resource for healing.

Maia and What Matters

Illustrated story book for children 6+ telling the story of Maia and her Grandmother who has a stroke.

Buy from Book Island

What does Super Jonny do when Mum gets sick?

A simple story book which can also be used as a classroom resource for teaching children how to help the sick. At the rear of the book is a page of questions which link to both the English and New Zealand national curricula.

Order print copies from

Buy Kindle eBook version from



Return to work support



Return to Work service

Read more in our Return to Work service’ section



Staying fit and healthy



Accessible gyms

Various council and gym facilities websites

Contact local gym facilities

Citizens Advice Bureau - Health and Wellbeing

Falls prevention programmes at home

Health Quality & Safety Commission New Zealand

Improving balance and strength to prevent falls

Falls prevention programmes in the community

Age Concern – SAYGo (Steady As You Go) Falls Prevention programme: designed for older people to increases strength, balance, mobility, participation and social inclusion

Contact local Age Concern branch

Green Prescription (to increase physical activity) – Health Navigator

Green Prescription - information

Various council and swimming pool facilities websites

Contact local swimming pool facilities - Directory of local councils

Physiotherapy sessions (Christchurch Stroke Club)

Group exercise classes facilitated by a physiotherapist, available during meeting times at:

  • Christchurch Stroke Club

  • Hornby Stroke Club

  • Rangiora Stroke Club

  • Richmond Stroke Club

Group Communication Classes facilitated by a Speech Language Therapist available during meeting times at:

  • Christchurch Stroke Club

  • Hornby Stroke Club

  • Rangiora Stroke Club

Contact Stroke Foundation Southern Region Office:

Tauranga exercise groups

YMCA Tauranga

Smooth Movers and Sit'N Be Fit


University of Otago – individualised exercise programmes for individuals with a neurological condition.

Contact through School of Physiotherapy Clinic


Help giving up smoking

0800 778 778

Quitline website

Food and nutrition

Health Navigator 

Guides to healthy eating and drinking

Ready-made meals which are delivered


Eat website


Countdown online shopping website

New World

New World online shopping website

Tai Chi

Tai Chi for Health Institute

Find an instructor in New Zealand



Staying safe at home and in your neighbourhood



Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) advice

Standing up to falls
Supporting people to move at home

Home safety checklist (pdf)

Carer-calling programme

St John

St John Carer Caller service

Elder and disabled people abuse

Are You Ok?

Abuse of family members

How can you get help if you are being abused (pdf)

Office for Senior Citizens 

Preventing abuse of elderly people

Emergency preparation

Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management

Information for people with disabilities or special requirements

Equipment and advice to assist activities of daily living

Easie Living

Accessible Home and Demonstration Centre

Ministry of Health

Accessing Equipment and Modifications Services

Women and stroke

Stroke Association UK


A self help guide on how aids and equipment can help life after stroke

Home Safety

Able Axcess

Rubber Ramps and steps

Know your neighbours

Neighbourhood support NZ

Neighbourhood support NZ website

Medical alarm information

Work and Income

Information on monitored medical alarms funded through Disability Allowance

St John

St John Medical Alarm services

NZ Police advice

New Zealand Police

Keep yourself safe at home - advice

Smoke alarms

New Zealand Fire Service

Smoke alarms - information

Home Visiting Service

Age Concern

Age Concern


Stroke clubs



Stroke Clubs unite people who have had a stroke, for mutual support and friendship. As well as enabling people to share experiences and help each other, the clubs hold social activities and organise outings: Stroke Clubs



Transport assistance and driving – getting about in the community



CCS Disability Action

CCS Disability action website

Citizens Advice Bureau

Total Mobility Scheme - Information

Driving after a stroke

Read our fact sheet about ‘Driving and Transport after a stroke

Driving assessments

Occupational Therapy NZ

Driving assessments - Information

Equipment for mobility

New Zealand Federation of Disability Information Centres

List of Disability Information Centres around New Zealand

Ministry of Health

Low-cost equipment and where to buy it

Know your neighbours

Neighbourhood support NZ

Neighbourhood support NZ website

Office for Senior Citizens

Connecting with your neighbours and community

Lottery grants

Community Matters

Information about grants to people with mobility and communication related disabilities

Mobility parking permit scheme

CCS Disability Action

Mobility Parking Scheme and application

SuperGold card - for use on public transport

SuperGold website

Total Mobility Scheme

NZ Transport Agency

Total Mobility around New Zealand - User guide (pdf)

Transportation services

Driving Miss Daisy

Vehicle modification

Ministry of Health

Vehicle modifications for disabled people of all ages

Volunteer drivers

Red Cross

Red Cross volunteer drivers

Age Concern

Volunteer drivers in various Age Concern branches



A complementary directory produced for Hamilton Stroke Club contains some additional services and resources, in both the Waikato region and nationwide.



Please help us today

Stroke devastates lives. 
Help us rebuild the lives of New Zealanders who experience the impact of stroke. Together, we can give them hope.