YOUNG Callum Warwick has at last found his voice after years of struggling to speak.
The seven-year-old was slow to learn to talk and when he finally did he forgot other words as soon as he learned a new one.
But now Callum, from Halliwell, is well on his way to becoming a chatterbox thanks to speech and language therapy programmes run by NHS Bolton.
Health chiefs have now launched a campaign, Giving Voice, to reach more people who struggle with their speech.
Callum’s mum, Deborah Fielding, of Bridge Street, said: “My brother had speech and language problems so I recognised it in Callum and wanted to get him help.
“The therapy has made a huge difference, he is getting better and better.
“It’s really important. I just want him to have a normal life, I don’t want him to struggle.”
As soon as Miss Fielding spotted her son’s problems, she spoke to her health visitor.
Callum was assessed and attended individual and group therapy sessions at Avondale Health Centre, Bolton, working with a specialist to improve his problems.
Staff at his nursery and school — St Thomas’s — as well as his mum, have also used various techniques to help him. He is now growing in confidence every day and expanding his vocabulary.
Thousands of children—and adults — benefit from speech and language therapy in Bolton every year.
Therapists also work with people with conditions such as stroke, learning and physical disabilities and head injuries.
Miss Fielding, aged 26, added: “The service has done a brilliant job and I’m really pleased. People don’t realise how important your speech and language are. The therapy is that extra help which makes all the difference.”
To find out more, visit givingvoiceuk.org