What is the Giving Voice campaign?

The RCSLT launched the Giving Voice campaign as a vehicle through which our members and their service users can demonstrate the unique, life-transforming and cost-saving work of the profession. It is more important than ever that speech and language therapy is understood and valued by colleagues, service users and the public.

The Giving Voice campaign has already empowered hundreds of RCSLT members to shine a spotlight on our profession at a time when visibility and an appetite for positive, proactive engagement are essential. In 2012, we invite all our members to draw inspiration from last year’s fantastic examples of local events, media coverage and influencing and join the campaign. As well as an invaluable chance to raise the profile of speech and language therapy, Giving Voice offers great continuing professional development opportunities.

As the campaign grows, new resources and training packages will be available for seasoned campaign champions and novices. Keep an eye on the Bulletin, the RCSLT website, Facebook and Twitter for the latest information.

Whether you are an extrovert who relishes meeting new people or a quiet planner with the determination to get your team campaigning, don’t miss out on the many opportunities that the RCSLT offers to promote the incredible work of speech and language therapists.

Why does speech and language therapy matter?

Problems with speech and language imprison the individual, and severely limit their participation in family life, the community, education and the world of work.

Undetected and untreated speech language and communication problems can lead to low levels of literacy, poor educational attainment and difficulties finding employment.

In turn, this can lead to a perpetuation of the poverty trap and a vicious cycle of health problems, including mental health and health inequalities.

  • 2.5 million people in the UK have speech, language or communication needs (SLCN).
  • More than half of children in deprived areas have SLCN.
  • Nearly two-thirds of young offenders have SLCN.
  • One in three stroke survivors have SLCN
  • 1.3 million people in the UK have a learning disability and also SLCN

Speech and language therapists play a vital role in helping these people.

The Giving Voice campaign highlights the benefits of speech and language therapy, the stories of those who have benefited from the support of a speech and language therapist and demonstrates the economic case for early intervention using speech and language therapy.

Speech and language therapy transforms lives

Every day, speech and language therapists work with a huge variety of people – from young children who stammer to older people recovering from stroke and other brain injuries. Speech and language therapists enable people to express themselves, to listen to and understand others.

They provide accurate identification, assessment and diagnosis of speech, language and swallowing disorders and enable people to develop or regain vital communication and swallowing skills.

The Giving Voice campaign demonstrates how speech and language therapy makes a difference to people with speech, language and communication needs, their families, and the wider society. We want to show what speech and language therapy is and the positive impact it has. Giving Voice also demonstrates that this unique and vital service is cost-effective and value for money.

As part of Giving Voice, we are encouraging you to come forward with your own stories to help us to explain the essential work speech and language therapists do and their impact on the lives of those they help.