Being able to have a spoken conversation is something which the majority of us take for granted. But what happens when you are born with a speech impediment such as a stutter which takes away your voice? That’s where the Middlesbrough-based support group, The McGuire Programme comes into play.
Two of the support group’s members, Matthew Richardson and Abbie Thompson sat down with We Are Middlesbrough to explain how the programme has transformed their lives and hundreds of others from around the globe.
“I’ve always had to fight to be able to speak.
“At the beginning of my life, it used to take me several minutes just to say my own name.” says 49-year-old Matthew.
Speaking confidently to us today, you would never imagine that Matthew has had to overcome such barriers, but that’s where The McGuire Programme comes into play.
Originally set up over 26 years ago in California by founder, Dave McGuire, a support group in Middlesbrough soon followed in the late 1990s.
And this programme seems to work miracles; especially when traditional NHS speech therapies have failed to make an impact.
“From being a teenager, I’ve been offered a number of speech therapy sessions on the NHS and although I am grateful for them, they haven’t been able to improve my stutter at all.” says 28-year-old Abbie who has joined the support group in recent months.
It was exactly the same story for Matthew until he attended his first McGuire Programme session.
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