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Coventry Charity Looks To Build Support Network

A Coventry charity set up to help victims of brain haemorrhages is hoping to establish itself as the hub of support for people afflicted by the unusual condition.

James Hennessy has come a long way since standing on a street corner with collecting tins to raise money for research into subarachnoid haemorrhages.

The haemorrhage is a leakage of blood over the surface of the brain, from a major blood vessel. The leakage occurs at a weakness in the wall of the vessel.

When the weak vessel wall begins to bulge outwards, it forms an aneurysm. The aneurysm can then burst at any time and nothing can be done to prevent this.

Mr Hennessy has been campaigning to raise awareness of the condition since his wife Val died suddenly from it in 1996 aged 54.

Now the Val Hennessy Trust is a fully-registered charity with an office in Queen Victoria Road in Coventry, and is hoping to appoint a specialist nurse to help people get over the condition.

A bid has been submitted to the lottery fund to pay for a nurse that could be the first referral point in the region for people recovering from the condition, or their relatives.

If this proves successful, the trust hopes to be able to cover the whole country, and provide uniform information to people wanting help.

Mr Hennessy said:

”A lot of surgeons differ in the way they treat it, but the person who has suffered from it is going to have a clip or a coil inserted and they often worry that it is going to give way.”

The trust already offers counselling to local sufferers, to help them come to terms with the difficulties they have faced since the haemorrhage.

The condition can affect anybody. Some people find their movement is restricted while others can lead a normal life.

But with little information available in this country, the condition can lead to uncertainty for sufferers and their families.

Trust administrator Gerard Millsopp said:

“We are looking at support and offering advocacy to people who need it, and we want a specialist nurse who will be able to give advice and help look after people.

“Even if we don’t get the funding we will be looking other forms of funding to keep our services going.”

The trust hopes to hear if it has been successful with its bid by the end of the month.
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CWN / Health / Organisations / Val Hennessy Trust / 13 Mar 01

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