Since 2009, United Stroke Alliance has been conducting our Youth Education on Stroke (YES) program to increase awareness of stroke symptoms among youth. In the YES program, a teacher, nurse, or other educator uses a curriculum around prevention and awareness to help 5th grade students (chosen due to their degree of science literacy and receptiveness to learning this type of information) learn the signs of stroke and to take early action if someone they know may be having a stroke. Typically, the YES program is presented in a health class or science class. The YES program uses United Stroke Alliance’s BE-FASTER! acronym to help youth remember the major symptoms of stroke and the action they should take.
Currently, United Stroke Alliance serves approximately 1,000 fifth grade students each year through our Youth Education on Stroke program. To date, the YES program has been conducted primarily in Peoria, Tazewell, and Woodford Counties in Illinois. In addition, United Stroke Alliance has shared our YES curriculum at no cost with other stroke coordinators throughout the country. In several instances, both locally and where United Stroke Alliance has shared our curriculum, students have recognized a stroke in a family member as a result of our YES program.