Psychosocial well-being after stroke

A sense of wellbeing is important for everyone. However, it is often affected when someone has a stroke. Many people feel grief, sadness and a loss of ‘who they are’. The effects of stroke can make it hard to do the things that normally bring people joy and connection and influence a person’s wellbeing. Stroke survivors, whānau, and clinicians all say it is important that wellbeing is supported in stroke services. However, they also say there is scope for services to ‘do things different’1, and do things better, to consistently support well-being for everyone.

In this study we are seeking to understand what matters for wellbeing after stroke, and how well-being is supported in stroke services and the factors that influence this. Together with stroke survivors, whānau and clinicians, we will explore how things could be done differently to better support wellbeing after stroke. Finally, we aim to co-create resources to support care that enhances wellbeing.

1 A quote from stroke whānau at a wānanga in Whakatane

by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND

Who is doing this research?

This research is led by Dr Felicity Bright. Felicity is a speech-language therapist and rehabilitation lecturer and researcher at Auckland University of Technology.

Felicity is joined by Bobbie-Jo Wilson (Ngāti Tūwharetoa) who is leading our engagement with Māori within this research, and Claire Ibell-Roberts. BJ and Claire are both physiotherapists and health researchers.

We are supported by Rukingi Haupapa (Te Arawa, Ngāti Whakaue). We have also appreciated the support of whānau from the Awhi Mai Stroke Trust in the Bay of Plenty. They have offered advice and direction as we have developed the research proposal and supported us in connecting with whānau.

A number of students have also contributed to this work: Kelsey Beet, Chelsie Park, Nikita Ngarongo-Porena, Holly Hing, Kira Milne, Caitlin Thomas, Karina Delemont, Lisa Keeley McDonnell, Olivia Grigg and April Reid.

Our research approach

Our research approach is based on  He Awa Whiria—Braided Rivers Model and uses a multi stage process. The intention is to ground the research in the needs and perspectives of people living with stroke and those of health care professionals.

Find out more

Research updates

We will post updates on the research as we move through the different phases, and provide links to our publications and research summaries.

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Would you like more information?

Just let us know! We are really happy to share information on a regular basis via email.

If you would like us to share any of the work we’re doing with your team (e.g. at an inservice), we’re really happy to explore this with you.

We can be contacted in the following ways:

  1. Email any enquiry to or
  2. Felicity Bright: or
  3. BJ Wilson:

You can also Download our study flyer

Take part in our research

Project details

Health Research Council of NZ

Principal investigator:
Dr Felicity Bright

Research team
Dr Felicity Bright, Bobbie-Jo Wilson, Claire Ibell-Roberts, Associate Professor Nada Signal


Key Collaborators:
Professor Katie Featherstone, Dr Aileen Collier, Dr Vivian Fu

February 2021 – June 2024


Take part in our research