Giving Voice

Monday, 3 November 2014

Time flies! (and so did I!)

I can’t believe so much time has passed since I last updated this blog! My Great North Run blog (and indeed training for the Great North Run!) took over my life the last few months and I just haven’t had the time to sit down and write. In addition to the running, I also relocated from Northumberland to Leeds for a Speech and Language Therapy position at the end of September,  so to say life has been a little hectic the last few months, is an understatement! (If you are interested in reading about my journey to the GNR raising funds for the North East Trust for Aphasia you can read about it here –

Just because I haven’t been blogging doesn’t mean I have forgotten about Giving Voice. I am absolutely loving my new job (working in a mainstream primary school) and take every available opportunity to tell anyone who will listen about what I do!

I even jumped off the Tyne Bridge last month and travelled by zipslide to the Gateshead side of the Tyne! I was of course in Giving Voice colours and was wearing a Giving Voice badge. The man that checked my harnesses before I jumped asked me about it and I took pride in telling him about Speech and Language Therapy and how we transform lives. This was a very welcome distraction to take my mind off the fact I was about to jump off the bridge! I was absolutely terrified until I was ‘flying’ through the air, by which point I actually quite enjoyed it and wondered why is has taken me a quarter of a century before deciding to try something so daring!

I tweeted @ZipslidesUK after the event and used relevant Speech and Language Therapy hashtags including #givingvoiceuk and they retweeted it J

In September I attended the RCSLT Mind the Gap Conference which was an enjoyable and educational two days. It was lovely to meet so many passionate SLTs and I managed to catch up with some of the other Giving Voice Innovation Group members. I was also recorded for the higher education roadshows, talking about my experiences since I graduated and my involvement in Giving Voice. I hope it inspires some more students to get involved in campaigning for the profession.
Over the summer I was working in an admin job and felt a little detached from Speech and Language Therapy, and apart from applying for lots of SLT jobs and running for the North East Trust for Aphasia I wasn’t really doing much related to Speech and Language or Giving Voice and I really missed it. I am so pleased to be working as a therapist again. To any students/new graduates reading this don’t ever give up on finding the job of you deserve (and use other opportunities to gain other skills).  I feel so lucky to be excited about going to work every day and knowing that I am making a difference to the lives of the children I work with.

I am also lucky to be part of a lovely team and have already met some brilliant therapists in the short time I have been there. I had a spare copy of the 2014 Giving Voice calendar which I gave to my new team. This is now proudly displayed in the clinic office and has enabled me to have some Giving Voice conversations with the other Speech and Language Therapists. The adult team in the service where I work have just won an award for the Giving Voice Choir they set up.

October 18th marked 3 years since Mass Mobilisation in London where SLTs descended on the Houses of Parliament to tell MPs the importance of SLT. I can't believe how the time has flown! This is still up there with one of the most exciting experiences of my life to date, and I tweeted my MP Ian Lavery to thank him once again for his support, to mark the anniversary of this day. I am looking forward to getting involved in the campaigning around the lead up to the general election 2015, and hope lots of other SLTs do too.

I promise not to leave it so long before I write again!
Speech and Language Therapy Transforms Lives

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