Rebecca de Vyea is a Highly Specialist Speech and Language therapist working at Auditory Verbal UK, who is about to complete her training to be an Auditory Verbal therapist.  

Rebecca studied English Language and Linguistics at university but it was babysitting a child who was receiving speech and language therapy and working as a Teaching Assistant supporting children with additional needs which inspired her to train as a speech and language therapist.

Her first job with the NHS had a very mixed case load but early on she developed an interest in deafness and learned British Sign Language at an evening class. Rebecca always continued to develop her skills and in 2005 attended a course run by Great Ormond Street Hospital to support deaf babies who had received cochlear implants.

Rebecca de VyeaShe explained: “At that time hearing technology like implants and hearing aids were not as advanced and effective as they are now. We tended to only support deaf children from around two or three after they had received their hearing technology and when concerns around how they would manage at school began to surface. I always very much felt that this was the wrong way round and deaf babies and their families should be supported from a much earlier stage. So, I put together a case to change the care pathway within our NHS team which included an additional speech and language therapist and allowed us to start working with babies.”

Rebecca continued to support deaf children and families from within the NHS and one of the families she worked with was going to  Auditory Verbal UK for Auditory Verbal therapy.

She said: “I saw what a huge difference this specialist therapy made and how the family-centred and parent coaching approach works. I signed up to and enjoyed some of the short taster courses provided by AVUK and these inspired me to sign up for AVUK's Foundation course to learn more about the development of spoken language through listening. Six months later I was even more inspired and convinced that this was a vital way to support the families of deaf babies and children who wanted their children to learn to talk, to have the same opportunities in life as their hearing peers.”

Rebecca has continued her Auditory Verbal training on the advanced course and after a change in her NHS role began working at AVUK to provide maternity cover.

She added: “I am working in my dream job with people who inspire me to provide the very best for the deaf babies and children that I work with. Getting support to families in the first few years of their child’s life is so crucial whether they want them to use sign language, spoken language or both. I’m hoping to complete my training and sit my exam to become a Listening and Spoken Language Specialist Certified Auditory Verbal Therapist at the beginning of 2023.”

Find out more about AVUK’s training.