Why did you want to become a Speech and Language Therapist?
I discovered Speech and Language Therapy while studying for my Linguistics degree. Between lectures, I volunteered at The Percy Hedley Foundation, a Conductive Education provision in Newcastle, where I worked as part of a multidisciplinary team to support children with complex needs and/or Autism. I was fascinated by the work of the SLTs and quickly realised it was the job for me.
What kind of experience do you have?
Prior to joining The Talking House, I worked with the NHS Special Educational Needs SLT team in Durham, working in clinics and mainstream and special needs provisions. A year later, I moved back to Yorkshire where I supported children with Speech, Language and Communication Needs (SLCN) in a mainstream primary school in Leeds and led a number of schools in the city to communication friendly status as an ELKLAN tutor.
At The Talking House, I am very fortunate to work across a wide range of settings. I am currently based in Specialist Inclusive Learning Centres where I work with children and young people between the ages of 3 and 19 and a mainstream primary school in Leeds. I also support private clients in clinic, at home and in their education settings.
What are you particularly passionate about?
My specialist areas of interest are Autism and complex needs and I am particularly passionate about working with children at a very early stage of communication. I am very lucky to spend my working week supporting those children most in need of help to interact with the people in their world. I love seeing the ‘little wins’ which make a huge difference to children and their families.
At The Talking House, I also take a lead on training and really enjoy sharing the knowledge and skills I have developed through working alongside some amazing and inspirational people (mainly the children!).
What are your hobbies and interesting facts about you?
I am an animal-lover and have always been passionate about integrating my love of horses into my work with children and young people. I recently discovered Hippotherapy (the use of a horse’s movement in therapy) and am working extremely hard to be one of the first SLTs in the UK to offer this as part of SLT intervention.
In my spare time, I can be found in my wellies either on the farm where I keep my horse Jonjo and two miniature Shetland ponies Little Legs and Tigger or walking my noisy dachshund Peggy Sue.