Message from the new Chair of Trustees
Coming back in the train to Cardiff from the BSA Lincoln conference I reflected on what a joy it was to have been there thanks very much Bob Adams and the Doncaster Stammering Association!
At the "open mike" session at the end, so many people stood up to say they had been inspired to accept their stammering and get on with living their lives well. So many talked about how their lives had changed for the better since the last conference. The talks and workshops were full of thoughts that have stuck in my mind, such as keynote speaker George Campbell's simple observation, "We are not damaged goods", and his reminder that if we wait to be fluent before we start living, we could find our lives have slipped away.
I am both humbled and excited to have been elected to the Chair of an organisation I believe is really going places, punching way above its weight. We have some major financial challenges, but we also have extraordinary motivation - and much goodwill. Under Leys Geddes's Chairmanship, I believe we have also found more of a voice - speaking up against mockery of stammering, pressing hard for effective early intervention, working with the business community.
If I had to sum up my vision for the BSA it would be that one word, "community". As a community we have a stronger voice to press for needed change. Together we can listen with understanding to people's pain, and break down the isolation that stammering can bring. But it's not simply about coping with pain. It's about sharing our experiences, our strength and our hope, so we can all live well with stammering.
John M Evans
Chair of the British Stammering Association
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