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Creating opportunities for young people with a learning disability and communication difficulty.

Talk about Talk

What is Talk about Talk?

Talk about Talk is a training and tutoring course for young people aged 14-24 years with communication difficulties. The programme develops young people's communication skills to enable them to co-deliver a two hour communication awareness training course for organisations that offer education, employment or training opportunities for young people with communication difficulties. Talk about Talk can be used by a range of organisations including: those in the criminal justice system, e.g. youth offending teams; education settings e.g. secondary schools, pupil referral units and FE colleges; and by community-based youth projects and agencies.

How does it work?

Talk about Talk has different elements to it:

Talk about Talk Induction: Adult trainers are trained by I CAN Communication Advisors to deliver Talk about Talk and to support and develop the communication skills of young people with communication difficulties. Teaching Assistants, Youth Workers, Offender managers, providers of employment training, school and FE inclusion staff will find this training invaluable.

Starting Talk about Talk: The now trained adult trainers then run a one day workshop with an I CAN Communication Advisor for young people with communication difficulties that develops their awareness of their speech, language and communication skills and prepares them to co-deliver (with the adult trainer) Talk about Talk training to external organisations or internal staff.

Talk about Talk Tutoring: a series of tutoring sessions. Adult trainers support young people to reflect on Talk about Talk sessions, and how to improve their communication and presentation skills.

Talk about Talk: The young people and adult trainer will repeatedly co-deliver this to external organisations as well as internal staff to build young people's skills and confidence as well as developing the delegates skills and awareness. It is a two hour interactive course for organisations that explains the communication difficulties that young people often have and gives participants some simple strategies to make interaction more successful.

Adrian Speakman, Young Person co-trainer: "Talk about Talk has helped me to understand different types of disabilities and to understand what difficulties someone else might have. I have taken this on board myself and understand more about my difficulties. I can now speak to professionals about my difficulties and explain them. Being involved in Talk about Talk will help me in the future as I now have presentation skills." You can read Adrian's story here

The Talk about Talk Evaluation found that for the young people:

  • Talk about Talk made a statistically significant difference to young people's communication, as rated by adults who worked with them.
  • Up to 98% of participants agreed that they would apply the knowledge gained through Talk about Talk training to their work environment.
  • Talk about Talk changed the way people worked. Follow up interviews with organisations three months after the training confirmed that the knowledge and training gained had been applied in the work environment.

Talk about Talk was developed as part of Raising Your Game - a 5 year partnership project funded by the Big Lottery Fund. Read more about Raising Your Game here

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