How an Association brings a world together
The World Stroke Organization is the only global body focused solely on the research, treatment, and challenges of stroke.
The WSO’s efforts culminate each year in the World Stroke Congress (WSC) – an annual meeting where specialists gather to discuss the latest scientific advancements in the field. The Congress last year took place in Singapore – WSC 2022 – and aimed at ensuring that people in the South and Southeast Asian region with lived experience of stroke and health professionals alike were visible.
Legacy – Outcomes & Impacts
The motto of last year’s Congress was “One Voice for Stroke”. The tangible legacy that the meeting left for all congresses to come was the importance of being together and speaking in “One Voice” – as the only way to move forward and overcome challenges.
Association and members alike, the outcomes of the meeting were clear and achieved – important challenges were discussed, experience was exchanged, people met in-person. This was the first onsite meeting after two years of virtual events and a clear outcome was the success of bringing back people together.
Professional & Community Benefits
It is not only that WSC 2022 brought the stroke world to Singapore – the event had big community and professional benefits for the Southeast Asian Region. It brought delegates from India, Indonesia, the Philippines, South Korea, Thailand. A number of side events took place that facilitated knowledge exchange and important discussions on latest developments:
- The Stroke Exchange Forum facilitated exchange between stroke advocates in South and Southeast Asia. The event included panel discussions on collaboration and meaningful involvement and status of stroke care in the region.
- World Stroke Day (29 October) in Singapore provided a public focal point for stroke awareness. Key landmarks around the city including, Helix Bridge, Singapore Flyer, the Marine Bay Sands Hotel and Gardens by the Bay were lit blue – the color of stroke awareness, highlighting the message #PresciousTime.
- A stroke awareness walk (Annual Walkathon) with the Singapore Stroke Association was launched by the Minister of Social and Family Development.
- A new WSO Stroke Certification program in India was launched aiming to drive access to quality stroke care.
Delegates Expectations & Objectives
Delegates were looking forward to meeting in-person once again after two years of virtual events. Most participants signed up to attend onsite. Full session halls and lively discussions clearly portrayed the excitement and buzz of the meeting. In the meantime, everyone enjoyed the side events to the fullest.
Long-term results and the road ahead
The stroke community is already looking forward to WSC 2023. The activities of the 2022’s brought many people to Singapore thus enhancing the city’s economic, scientific, cultural and touristic appeal. The combination of the four was perfectly illustrated by the lighting up of key Singaporean sites.
Delegates turned into brand advocates thanks to social media – digital conversations were flourishing; a significant increase in social media activity was observed. A record was set with more than 5M hashtag impressions (#WSC2022) – nearly 1M more compared to WSC 2021! Pictures, selfies and videos were all around!
We can’t wait to see what 2023 will bring. But one thing is for sure – if the community keeps building on the legacy, activities, and initiatives of WSC 2022, success will certainly follow.
By: Andrea Peycheva
This article was originally published in HQ #108 / Association Event Legacies, March 2023: http://bit.ly/3FwKuGy