Project aims to stop people from dying too soon

Harvey, granny, ellie, lennon and logan

Chest Heart and Stroke Scotland has launched a new initiative in one of Glasgow's most deprived areas

13th June 2019 by Gareth Jones 0 Comments

A charity has launched a new initiative which aims to improve health in one of Glasgow’s most deprived areas.

A new project that aims to stop people in Drumchapel dying too soon from poor health has been launched by Chest Heart and Stroke Scotland this week.

The Health Defence Scotland project – based in the Chest Heart and Stroke Scotland Drumchapel Community Hub – will provide free health checks, healthy living workshops and ongoing support to local people as they make lifestyle changes to improve their health.

The project was set up in Drumchapel to tackle its serious health inequalities. Glasgow has the highest rate of deaths from heart disease in people under the age of 75 and the highest rate of deaths relating to long-term lung conditions. In 2017, the life expectancy for both men and women in Scotland was lowest in Glasgow.

Chest Heart and Stroke Scotland volunteer Sarah Campbell, who has lived in Drumchapel all her life, knows first-hand how devastating long-term health conditions can be.

Sarah’s eight-year-old son Logan has suffered from a serious heart condition since birth. She also lost her mum to a heart attack in 2017.

She said: “This is the best thing to happen in Drumchapel for quite some time. The project could be really life changing for people around here and it could help families like mine.

“When I was pregnant with my twins the doctor found a heart murmur but said everything would be fine. My family has a long history of heart and health problems so I was really worried. 

“We later found out that my wee boy Logan has multiple holes in his heart that led to swelling and leaking into his lungs. Ever since he was born, it’s gradually got worse and we’ve been back and forth non-stop to the hospital getting operations and seeing doctors.

“When my mum passed away after having heart problems for many years, Logan found it especially hard. He was only six years old and not only was he confused about his own illness, he now didn’t know why his precious granny was taken away from him.

“Logan is still struggling with his illness and the impact this has on his mental and physical health. He often feels breathless and he suffers from anxiety too. We’re now looking at another hospital wait before knowing whether he’ll need further operations, possibly open heart surgery.

“But despite all this, for the first time in a very long time, we’re feeling positive about the future. Thanks to Chest Heart and Stroke Scotland and all of the help they offer locally, I feel like we’ve got a new lease of life again. We’re ready to take on whatever life throws at us.”

Jane-Claire Judson, chief executive of Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland, said the project had been welcomed by the local community.

She said: “It’s only through support from the community and our amazing donors that we can launch this life-changing project. They are giving people more time with those they love.

“This new project will help people get free access to the tools they need to live a healthier life in the future – and break the cycle of health inequalities. 

“Sadly, far too often where you live in Scotland determines how long you live for. People in Drumchapel and all across Scotland are dying too soon because of poor health but by working together we can change that.”