Caitlin's story

When Caitlin’s son Wilf started to show a delay in his speech and language she approached the HENRY speech and language team in Waltham Forest for support.

My husband and I realised that our son Wilf’s language was a bit delayed after his two-year evaluation with our health visitor. We thought it would be a good idea to get some support. One of our friends had used the HENRY speech and language team and recommended that we contacted them.

6 weeks later we had our first appointment with our Speech and Language Therapist - Jo Quinlan. As it was during the COVID pandemic the sessions were online rather than in person. We were a bit anxious about having the sessions online at first, but we really quickly formed a bond with Jo. We immediately felt that she was someone who was very invested in our family but would also be frank with us about what we might hope to achieve from our sessions, which we appreciated. Jo had done her homework about us and had carefully read everything we had submitted about Wilf in advance so she was able to support us from the very beginning without us having to explain everything to her.

Very quickly we started to feel that in Jo we had an ally - someone who was able to support us and who genuinely cared about our progress. My husband was working from home during the pandemic and he made time to take part in our sessions because we both felt they were so valuable.

During our meetings, Jo would listen to us and give us space to speak about how things had been during the week. She would give us suggestions for games to play to encourage Wilf’s speech and support his language development. We would then film little videos of him for her so that she could see how we were progressing. 

Our sessions with Jo gave us something to work towards and helped us feel that we were supporting Wilf in the right way. She helped us to set an achievable expectation for ourselves rather than comparing him to his peers. We’re really grateful.