About the organisation
Speech Therapy Interactive is a private speech and language therapy practice owned by Tina Kad. Initially trained as a psychologist, Tina went onto complete her postgraduate degree in speech and language therapy.
Tina now has over 10 years of experience working for the NHS in a variety of settings. Then, in 2020, she began working as an independent speech and language therapist.
Speech Therapy Interactive aims to:
• improve the quality of life of adults
• help adults re-integrate into the community
• boost individuals’ self-confidence and independence
• help people to have meaningful and valued lives after strokes, brain injuries and/or dementia diagnoses
The practice supports adults with communication, cognitive and swallowing difficulties in a community/rehabilitation setting. Many of these adults have acquired or progressive neurological conditions.
Speech Therapy Interactive provides services in Hindi, Urdu, Punjabi and English. They also support residents in care and nursing homes.
Experience with the EALTS
Tina learned about the EALTS through Essex County Council’s website. She had already hired an intern and wanted to help her complete speech and language therapy apprenticeship. Having recently learned of this new course, Tina was keen to research funding options and support for employers.
Tina found the matching process straightforward, thanks to her EALTS support lead. “Natalie went through the whole process step by step,” says Tina, “She was easily accessible via phone, email or video call and was very approachable. She explained everything in simple terms and made the process easy to understand.”
Tina’s application was submitted within a few days of completion, and she was soon matched with a levy donor, who was happy to support the apprenticeship.
Outcomes and benefits
Speech Therapy Interactive’s apprenticeship education fees were fully covered by the levy funders. The apprentice was able to pursue university alongside practical work experience.
Tina could delegate more work to the apprentice and avoid burnout. This allowed Tina to expand her horizons, focus on new projects and create new resources. Speech Therapy Interactive could then offer more services to improve adults’ quality of life.
Speech Therapy Interactive’s apprentice enjoyed a range of responsibilities, including:
• providing varied support and advice to patients, new referrals and their loved ones under the supervision of Speech and Language Therapists (SLTs)
• obtaining relevant information and documentation
• helping to develop resources to support clients and patients
• assisting SLTs with literature searches and data inputting
• actively contributing to team meetings, including clinical updates
“At first, our apprentice was worried about juggling a degree with full-time work,” explains Tina, “but she has enjoyed the opportunity to gain new skills and increase her knowledge. She appreciates the combination of university study and applying knew knowledge and theories in a practical setting.”
The apprentice is now able to pick up more theory and apply it when working with clients. She has successfully built rapport and improved her communication. She’s also become more analytical and critical in terms of therapy, prognosis and record keeping. It’s given her a clear insight into working in the ‘real world’.
What would you say to anyone considering using the EALTS?
Tina says, “Don’t let imposter syndrome take over and discourage you from applying! The process is simple to follow, with useful guidance from support leads, and is not as daunting as it might seem at first.”