Student overcomes stammer to win award from Michael Palin

Michael Palin with Georgie Simpson-Silo
Michael Palin with Georgie Simpson-Silo

STUDENT Georgie Simpson-Silo has been presented with an award by broadcaster Michael Palin for her work highlighting the plight of young people with a stammer.

The 18-year-old, a student at Richard Taunton Sixth Form College in Southampton, has stammered her whole life and said the condition has affected her confidence since she was at primary school.

For the last two years she has been a member of the Action For Stammering Children Youth Panel, which aims to raise awareness of stammering.

ALSO READ: Grease was performed by 15 Thornden school pupils

“We have run media campaigns, helped schools become stammer aware and all sorts,” she said.

“The charity gives a voice to young people who stammer. I created some hold up stammering cards for children and I also created a piano composition for ASC too which raised over £500.”

Georgie, who lives in the New Forest and attended The Gregg School in Southampton before college, has been having private speech therapy since she was ten but also went on courses at the Michael Palin Centre for Stammering in London. The centre has annual awards for young people and, after being nominated by her regular speech therapist, she was invited along.

She added: “The award was a huge surprise, I never expected to win an award ever so it was honestly very lovely that my speech and language therapist nominated me.

“I think a lot of us who stammer sometimes don't realise how much we have achieved so it was really nice to have recognition of that. I just do my work for the love of helping others and wanting to give back to the therapists that have helped me.”

The centre was set up by the NHS and the Association for Research into Stammering Childhood in 1993. Palin lent his name to the centre after playing Ken, an assassin with a stammer, in the comedy film A Fish Called Wanda.

“He has a very kind and warm presence, I didn't really feel nervous around him either which is a first because I was so nervous before going,” said Georgie. “He had great humour as well, he cares truly about the centre and everyone's achievements. It was lovely.”

Georgie has just finished her last year of a health and social care level 3 NVQ course at Richard Taunton and will be going to Leeds Beckett University in September to study BSc Speech and Language Therapy.

A message from the Editor

Thank you for reading this article - we appreciate your support in reading the Daily Echo.

Subscribing to the Echo means you have unrestricted access to the latest news, features and Saints coverage - all with an advertising-light website.

You will also have full access to Saintsplus, your new home for Southampton FC tactical analysis, features and much, much more.

Don't take my word for it - subscribe here to see for yourself.

Follow the latest breaking news in the Southampton area by joining our Facebook group - Southampton News - Breaking News and Incidents

Follow the latest court and crime news on our dedicated Facebook group - Hampshire Court and Crime News