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From Oliver with love

Emily and Oliver using AAC device and eye gaze technology

National Star student Oliver has sent his first ever email to his mum!

Oliver has complex communication and physical impairments so, for him, independent communication has been an uphill struggle. However, with the help of his Speech and Language Therapist Emily Harris, who is a specialist in supporting students who use electronic communication devices, Oliver is now sending emails to family and friends.

At the start of the year Oliver did not understand what the concept of an email was. Now he has mastered the use of eye gaze technology to control his communication device, Oliver, with support from staff, can confidently share his thoughts and feelings with his family and friends via email.

Oliver’s goals were to start communicating on his own and to start putting three words or phrases together on his communication device to create longer messages. He has now mastered this skill with Emily’s support.

‘When Oliver put together an email message and sent it to his mum for the first time from college it was a really moving moment and the culmination of lots of hard work on Oliver’s part – what a lovely surprise for his mum too,’ said Emily, one of a number of specialist speech and language therapists supporting students at National Star in Gloucestershire, Herefordshire and Wales.

Being able to communicate with others is a life skill that will help Oliver live more independently in the future. Before studying at National Star this seemed out of reach.

With support from donors like you, National Star can invest in more innovative technology and ensure specialist staff like Emily have time to research new ways of improving communication for students.

See the life-changing moment when Oliver sent his first ever email to his mum

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