Introducing AVT to the Republic of Ireland Auditory verbal therapy made its way to the UK for the first time in 1999 with our founder Jacqueline Stokes. Yet at the beginning of 2015 there were still no AVT services in Ireland, only a short hop over the Irish Sea (or an hour’s flight on the delightful Aer Lingus). That was until an inspirational group of parents from “Our New Ears” made it happen. In January 2015, therapists Louise and Frances were invited to talk to a group of professionals (Irish speech and language therapists, audiologists and teachers of the deaf) and then a group of parents. The talks included an introduction to auditory verbal therapy and strategies for working with young deaf children. The response from the professional group was phenomenal. Ten professionals indicated that they would like to attend Part One training – Working Through Audition. In addition, a number of parents wanted to engage in therapy immediately. Rachel from Our New Ears explained what inspired them. “AVT. Three letters meaning so much and so fitting that it should be the completion of the trifecta bringing Ireland into the modern world. Newborn screening, bilateral implants, and the right therapy for rehabilitation. “Over the last four years we are lucky to have witnessed the first two events. We felt the time was right to address the third, and so Our New Ears have worked with AVUK over the last year to make this dream a reality.” On the 28th and 29th of May Louise and Frances returned to Dublin as part of a collaboration with Our New Ears. The therapists were hosted by DeafHear in central Dublin who provided them with therapy rooms, tea and biscuits and genuine Irish hospitality! Six children and their parents were seen for initial Auditory Verbal Therapy appointments and all six have signed on for further sessions which will take place in September, December and February. Eimear Grennan, mum to Cole, said of the AVT session: “We had our first experience of a professional explaining how to go about building our child’s language and giving us the tools to do it. Recording the session allowed us for once to stay on track and focussed. AVT is what we have been missing!” Auditory verbal therapist Louise has said “It is a privilege to be invited by Our New Ears to Ireland to start this venture. I feel inspired by the professionals and families in Dublin and the hard work they have put in the make this happen. I’m very excited about this opportunity, and am very much looking forward to what’s ahead!” We sign off with some inspiring words that AVUK and Our New Ears feel sums it all up… Change will not come if we wait for some other person, or if we wait for some other time. We are the ones we’re been waiting for. We are the change that we seek. Barack Obama Our New Ears and AVUK would like to thank DeafHear for supporting this endeavour by kindly allowing us to use their premises and providing a welcoming environment for all.