Campaign Achievements 2013


Winter 2013


Joanna Frederick, an independent SLT from Melton Mobray entered a Giving Voice Christmas tree into the town’s Christmas tree festival, and displayed the tree in the reception of the council offices and the library throughout the Christmas period. The tree was decorated with quotes about communication and speech and language therapy. These quotes were gathered from celebrity supporters of the GV campaign, parents, teachers, SALT service users, children’s centre staff, local NHS and independent SALTs as well as the local MP and local councillors.


Examples of the 30 quotes displayed:

“Communication is fundamental to politics. The greatest idea in the world cannot get off the ground unless it can be communicated clearly and persuasively. Helping people communicate what they want to say is therefore a hugely important role and speech therapists are both dedicated and vital to giving people the tools they need to use their voice.” Rt Hon Alan Duncan MP - Rutland & Melton

“I believe through the knowledge I have gained from speech and language therapists that I have been able to share this information with over 1000 families… That’s 1000 families making small, easy changes to improve their children’s speech and language development!” Heather Christian, community outreach worker (library services)

“Speech and Language therapy has allowed my daughter to grow up being herself. Nothing can be more important.” Parent

As well as this a talking book was attached to the tree. This gave more information about the work of Speech and Language Therapists and the impact they have.


On Tuesday 3 December Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Partnership NHS Trust held a Giving Voice event attended by more than 80 members of the Trust. Service users, carers, staff and the general public, attended to find out more about the Speech and Language Therapy services we provide. We also invited Commissioners, councillors and MPs. The event was a direct consequence of our members requesting more information about Speech and Language Therapy. It was an ideal occasion to celebrate the unique contribution Speech and Language Therapists make locally and nationally. To read more about the event, click here.






Giving Voice was a key part of the first party conference of NI21, the new political party formed by Basil McCrea MLA leader and John McCallister MLA in Northern Ireland.It was held at the Europa Hotel Belfast event and was well attended. Visitors came to the RCSLT stand to find out more about the work of Speech and Language therapists, and make a Giving Voice bauble for their Christmas tree. To view more pictures from the event, click here.

The #givingvoicexmas campaign is part of our our work in Northern Ireland to continue to raise awareness of speech language and communication needs. To view more pictures of Giving Voice Christmas decorations, click here.




Autumn 2013_GWY6858

We celebrated the achievements of Giving Voice champions over the past year in October 2013, with the Giving Voice awards. To find out more about the winners, click here.








Speech and Language Therapists at the Royal Hospital for Neuro-disability held a Giving Voice event to help local businesses communicate effectively with their customers who may have a communication disability. The event included presentations from former patients about their experiences, and SLTs plan to continue to help local business to support their customers with communication problems in the future.






SLT team photo


A group of SLTs from Airedale Hospital in West Yorkshire presented to other professionals and members of the public about the role of speech and language therapists in helping people who stammer as part of Giving Voice.








Sheffield SLT Soc Speech therapy transforms lives display

Students from the University of Sheffield held their first Giving Voice event of the year, which involved handing out postcards to Students, therapists and also friends and family. The cards had the question; ‘Why is Communication Important’, participants then wrote their response on the cards, with a prize for the winner. The winner was Laura Gallacher, a third year Geography and Planning student. She wrote a poem about communication:

Can you imagine the frustration, Of a whole entire nation,
Plunged into a world with no communication?
Maybe you could go without talking for a while,
But what about the smaller things, a nod, wave, a smile,
No texting, Facebook or a tea-time Skype,
So think about this the next time you start to type,
How would it feel to never be able to convey,
Feelings of celebration, relief or even pain and dismay, Can you picture how difficult life would be,
If it was lacking in heart-to-hearts over a cup of tea!
We should be grateful then in our ability to communicate,
As it is a privilege we should never underestimate




Summer 2013



Liverpool Community Hea

Earlier this year, Liverpool Community Health (LCH) NHS Trust launched an awareness initiative to support people with communication disabilities and improve their shopping experiences at local shops and supermarkets, funded by the Giving Voice local activity fund.

Following conversations with staff at the store, Sainsbury’s East Prescot Rd became the first supermarket to sign up to this campaign. Matt Birch, Regional Manager for Sainsbury’s, invited Councillor Richard McLinden, Chair of the Adult Social Care and Health Select Committee at Liverpool City Council, LCH patients and staff to visit the East Prescot Road store.

The group met with the supermarket colleagues, shared their shopping experiences, toured the newly refurbished store and also presented Sainsbury’s with copies of the poster which will be used as part of their staff training and development plans.


Cheltenham Science Festival (2)

Louise Walters, SLT in Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Foundation Trust, jumped at the chance to participate in a local science festival, noticing that this would be an ideal opportunity to show off her team’s work with Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC) devices. They used the event to display different high and low tech communication aids, and explain why they might be needed. The team’s presence at the event was supported by two service users, who demonstrated the use of their communication aids, and their suppliers. The team were interviewed for a piece on local radio, managing to demonstrate the communication aids live on air. Over the course of the event hundreds of visitors came to their stall to test the communication aids and find out about the work of SLTs.

Louise said “Our role as SLTs is to ensure that we don’t fit patients around the technology but the technology works for the patients. Overall the event was a huge success and I know on our part SLT were delighted to be involved. I came away feeling proud of our team work and that what we do everyday really is extraordinary. “



1 million lamps over 1 million children in UK with communication difficulties

Joanne Burr and Caroline Coyne, Directors of Communicate Speech and Language Therapy Services in Blackpool participated in a night-time bike ride through the Blackpool illuminations. They used the opportunity to spread the Giving Voice message, combining facts about the prevalence of Speech, language and communication difficulties with facts about the Blackpool illuminations.









Hounslow Giving Voice Team

The paediatric speech and language therapy team in Hounslow held an awareness raising day, featuring events and activities for local children and parents, and inviting the local mayor to attend. The team used the event to talk about the importance of communication and

the crucial role that speech and language therapists play in developing and supporting communication skills. To see more photos from the event, click here.






Emma Shaughnessy and students from Canterbury Christ Church University hosted a Giving Voice event at the Kilburn festival in July where they asked members of the public to write their wishes for the future in Giving Voice speech bubbles, and asked vistors to complete a survey about their perceptions of SLT.

Spring 2013

Andrea Robinson Primary Care 2013


Andrea Robinson, a Giving Voice champion and SLT from Derbyshire spoke to delegates at the Primary Care 2013 Conference in Birmingham about the Giving Voice campaign. Andrea spoke about the importance of campaigning in SLT, how her team were able to achieve this. To view Andrea’s presentation, visit the Primary Care website by clicking here.







whole team


Central Essex Community Services (CECS) organised a week of Giving Voice activities that included a stand in their local shopping centre, collaboration with students from the university of Essex, and organised for their chief executive and a local commissioner to visit and observe therapy. The team invited parents and children from across the area to produce speech bubbles describing what speech and language therapy means to them. The events resulted in great feedback from parents, staff and participants. John Niland (Chief Executive) wrote to the team afterwards saying they were a ‘credit to the profession’. He has asked to be invited to a future team meeting and to shadow further therapy sessions to gain more insight into the service in order to support the team as effectively as possible.



Birmingham City University Students organised a flashmob in Birmingham City Centre to raise awareness of the Giving Voice campaign. To view more photos from the event, click here


Students and staff from De Montfort University Leicester organised a week of Giving Voice activities. To view more pictures from the event, click here.