Award for helping young offenders communicate


Posted on Tuesday 5 August 2014
Speech therapists Hannah Coles and Kay Gillett

Hannah Coles (left) and Kay Gillett

Two community speech and language therapists have received a prestigious award for their work helping young offenders overcome communication problems.

Kay Gillett and Hannah Coles have been awarded the Sternberg Clinical Innovation Award by the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists. They were recognised for setting up a service for the Youth Offending Service (YOS) in Lambeth.

Miranda Macaulay, clinical lead and speech and language therapist, says: “Some vulnerable young people have problems interacting with others or find it difficult to understand complex information like telling the time, so they miss court appointments.

“They might be labelled as having behavioural issues but in fact their problems may stem from undiagnosed autism, language difficulties or dyslexia, for example.

“I’m delighted that Hannah and Kay’s project has given YOS case workers tools to identify young people with speech, language and communication problems and ways to support them.

“The legal process can be intimidating. This service helps the YOS to support young people going through the process, and encourages them to take positive action such as going back to education".

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