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As part of Speech Pathology Week 2019, we held a Children’s Afternoon Tea at our offices.

We had about half a dozen children attend, with parents or caregivers, plus a few that sort of came in and out around their appointments.

It was a fun event and it was interesting to see the children engaging so well, a couple of the boys sat down next to each other and bonded over a shared interest in one of the boys iPads. Before we knew it, they were happily taking turns and chatting away. Sometimes we feel that these types of devices reduce communication but in this case, it was a common interest between the two and they spent the afternoon together using pretty impressive social skills. The Speech Pathologist that works with one of the boys thought his communication was at its best.

We were focusing on speech pathology week and improving communication but one of the side benefits of this event was that children were trying foods that they normally wouldn’t. One child really surprised their mother by trying a blueberry, and then even having a cup of tea. He also ate strawberries and then encouraged his new friend to try some too. Before long they were both scoffing strawberries and one of the boys even took some home at the end of the event. It’s amazing how the social setting can encourage children to do things that no amount of parent’s asking will.

We also got feedback from families that it was great to chat to others, who understood the challenges and also some of the highlights.

Anne (a Mentor) and Brooke (scheduler) did a great job running the event and many clinicians drifted through and said “hello” between appointments.  Definitely an event we will run again, so look out for it.