Welcome to our final issue of the year. 

To round things off we have art events, group updates and fabulous festive activities. Enjoy!


Sharing the art of Say Aphasia

One of our resident artists, Mark, has been using his creative talents to spread the word about Say Aphasia. 

Mark created portraits of renowned writers Jeremy Dyson and Andy Nyman and took them to the Ilkley Literature Festival where they were doing an event.

He presented the portraits to the 'chuffed' pair and talked about aphasia with them.

Mark and Caroline, who run the Skipton Say Aphasia group, attached a QR code to the back of each portrait, linking back to the Say Aphasia website.

Another great way to share our message. Fantastic work Mark and Caroline.



Skipton updates

Always working to spread more aphasia awareness, Mark and Caroline at the Skipton group have some other exciting projects in the pipeline. 

They’re currently talking to Skipton Building Society about placing in their building some of the art that Mark produced for the fantastic Kala Sangam exhibition earlier this year.


The team at Skipton Building Society have completed the Communication Access training.

So we’re keen to grow our relationship with them.

Mark and Caroline are also looking into organising an Aphasia Awareness art exhibition at their local library, and in Skipton too.

Watch this space.



Free table tennis sets

The Stroke Association and Table Tennis England are running a scheme whereby community groups for stroke support can apply for a free table tennis set. 

The net can be set up on any table or surface so it is accessible to wheelchair users as well. 

You can request a set for your group from the Stroke Association by emailing [email protected]

Mark and Caroline heard about this at the online Stroke Association Stroke network conference in September.

So do sign up for the conference to hear about interesting initiatives like this.



Save the date: aphasia conference

The Speakeasy Aphasia Conference is due to be held 14th-15th April 2024 in Coventry.

We have no further details yet but do save the date and we’ll update you when we know more.



Winchester updates

The team at the Winchester group have had a busy few months with visitors from all walks of life:

  • Read Easy Charity. The charity helps adults learn or relearn to read. Pat, Stephen and Alan visited the group a few weeks ago, as Winchester alone has 5,000 adults unable to read very well.

They helped a few of our members  to read with volunteer tutors at the City Library.

And Jez talked about how he’d read Bram Stoker’s Dracula over the course of a year. You can find out more here.

  • From the University of Winchester, Prof James Faulkner came to talk about his programme HELP Hampshire, which involves exercises for keeping active.

  • Holly Trowbridge and Amelia Shaw from the same university also came to talk about the benefits of hydrotherapy and swimming.

  • MP Steve Brine visited the group and wrote an article in the Conservative party newsletter, raising awareness of aphasia.

The Winchester group has also been featured in an article for the Hampshire Chronicle, following a meeting with one of their journalists. Well done team!




Feature in Sussex Exclusive

We’ve delighted with our feature on the Sussex Exclusive website.

It details the Say Aphasia mission, and our unique position as a charity offering drop in groups run by people with aphasia, for people with aphasia.

Another step towards making aphasia more recognised and accepted. You can have a read here.



Darlington updates

Pete, who runs our Darlington group, is doing a great job of spreading the word about Say Aphasia in the North East.

He recently met with
NETA (North East Trust for Aphasia), another local charity, to see how we can work together.


The aim is to give people with aphasia the lowdown on all the local groups available to them, and find ones that are easiest/closest to get to.



Selsey updates

Our Selsey group is going from strength to strength.

At the last meet up they listened to music, poetry and created art based on an autumn theme.

The activities generated some good discussion at everyone’s pace. 

In January 2024 the Selsey team are looking forward to welcoming a social work student from the University of Chichester.

The hope is that she will help drive relationships between the stroke unit at St Richards Hospital and their discharge coordinators, with a view to growing the Selsey group.

Great work and we look forward to seeing the progress next year.



New Bournemouth group

Did you know we now offer a group in Bournemouth?

Run by Chris, the Bournemouth group had a great opening session and we’re now keen to grow the numbers even more.

Do let anyone know who might be interested. You can find all the details here. 



Join us at the Brighton Half Marathon

Now is the perfect time to join us in doing the Brighton Half Marathon if you’re looking for a New Year Challenge.

Known as the ‘happiest half,’ it’s a fairly flat course, with great views and a brilliant atmosphere. 

If you run for Say Aphasia you’ll be raising awareness and funds to help people in the aphasia community who really appreciate your efforts.

We still have a few places left so why not sign up? You can join the team here. 



Well done Kirsty

Friend and longtime champion of Say Aphasia, Kirsty Maguire, has been awarded a prestigious Chairman’s Award at the Sussex Community Foundation Trust’s Staff Awards. 

The award was for the brilliant support she offers as a speech and language therapist to people with aphasia. As well as the great work she does in raising awareness of the condition.

Congratulations Kirsty. So well deserved.



Lighting up Burgess Hill

If you’re driving around Burgess Hill in Sussex this Christmas you just might pass by one seriously festive house.

Howard, one of our fantastic peer leaders is back with the annual light display at his home, all in aid of Say Aphasia.

Thank you so much Howard. You can donate here. 



Celebrating Christmas together

Our groups have been having a fantastic time celebrating the festive season over the last few weeks. Among many others:

  • The Hove group held a Christmas lunch at the Amex Stadium, home of Brighton and Hove Albion

  • The Eastbourne group had a lovely lunch at the Hydrohotel

  • The Woodingdean group enjoyed bacon baps at their Christmas get together
  • The Skipton group invited some musician friends along for a festive singalong

  • The Exeter enjoyed lots of festive food and games.

  • The Chichester group had a wonderful get together. 





We’ve grown this year...

  • Thanks to generous donations from our supporters, we’ve grown the charity this year. We now run 15 groups across the UK, helping over 200 members with aphasia, with the help of 36 volunteers.

  • We have improved our links with Sussex NHS, to help design the recovery pathway after brain injury to include Say Aphasia.

  • We have continued working with UCL and London City University on research projects that aim to improve the lives of people with aphasia.

  • We have continued to work on making our charity processes and communications as aphasia friendly as possible. We have created aphasia friendly training for our peer leaders and volunteers, to help them provide the best service to our members.

  • We continue to develop the support we offer to our volunteers. One example is our monthly online support meeting where our peer leaders can express their ideas for improving drop-in groups.

  • After a successful day-long trustees meeting in November, we are now equipped with an even clearer vision to help people with aphasia in 2024 and beyond. Follow our socials and newsletters to see how this develops.  



Huge thanks to you

Without your support we wouldn’t be able to do any of this.

So finally, we’d like to say a massive thank you - to our supporters, volunteers, advocates, ambassadors, fundraisers, partners and allies.

We wish you a happy and peaceful Christmas and New Year. 

See you in 2024.