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Western Trust raises awareness of Developmental Language Disorder for international #DLDday


The Mayor Launched DLD Day In Ebrington Speech And Language Class With Mrs Pentland (teacher) Sinead Marlow (SLT) And Mr Guthrie (Principal)

Our Speech and Language Therapy Team are delighted to support this year’s World Development Language Disorder Awareness Day today (Friday 20 October 2023).

Developmental Language Disorder (DLD) is a hidden but common disability that affects 1 in 14 people causing difficulties understanding and using language for no known reason.

Children In St Anne’s Speech And Language Class

The 2023 #DLDday theme is ‘DLD Around the World’ – highlighting that DLD occurs in all languages across the world.

Raising Awareness of Developmental Language Disorder (RADLD), the lead organization who coordinates international DLD day are advocating for increased recognition and support for people with DLD across their lifespan.

“People with DLD are 6 times more likely to suffer from anxiety and 3 times more likely to have clinical depression. They are also at significant risk of struggling with reading, spelling and mathematics. Although DLD is a common condition affecting many areas of life, people with DLD are unlikely to receive access to services,” said Stephen Parsons, Chair of RADLD.

The Speech and Language Therapy Team in the Western Trust have joined the campaign to raise awareness of DLD so as many people in our Trust become aware of and understand this unknown but common condition. Derry City and Strabane District Council Mayor Patricia Logue joined Ebrington Speech and Language Class on Monday 16 October 2023 to launch DLD celebrations, and join in a party with the children.

This year, the world is lighting up purple and yellow to boost awareness of DLD globally. RADLD can confirm that more than 80 landmarks are scheduled to shine bright on or around Friday 20 October 2023.

Here, the Western Trust is lighting up purple to raise awareness of DLD. Head to the Council Buildings in Derry /Londonderry on Thursday 19 October 2023 to see it lit up purple for #DLDday.

We want as many people as possible in the Western Trust area to talk about DLD! Health Centres across the Western Trust area are supporting DLD Awareness Day with information stands and coffee mornings organised to raise awareness. Local schools are also getting involved this year by encouraging pupils and staff to wear purple/yellow and running colouring competitions.

Parents And Children In Holy Trinity Speech And Language Class, Enniskillen. Pictured With SLT Elaine McGale

Christine Harper, Western Trust Clinical Lead, Speech and Language Team for DLD explains:

“The Speech and Language Therapy Department are delighted to support #DLDday to help raise awareness of this hidden disability. DLD results in a child or adult having difficulties talking and/or understanding language. This is a lifelong condition that affects approximately two children in every classroom of 30, affecting literacy, learning, friendships and emotional wellbeing. It is important to raise awareness of DLD to ensure that those affected can receive the support from professionals including Speech and Language Therapists and teachers, which can make a real difference to their lives. Speech and Language Therapists have a crucial role to play in the diagnosis of DLD and in supporting people with DLD, along with their families and the professionals working with them, to understand their diagnosis, achieve their potential and reduce the impact of their difficulties.”

Please visit the RADLD social media channels and for more information, or contact your Speech and Language Therapy Department in your local health centre.