Purple ‘Square’ helps raise awareness of DLD

Cameron Square lit up purple for DLD awareness
Cameron Square lit up purple for DLD awareness

Anyone walking through Cameron Square in Fort William last Friday 18th October, may have noticed it was lit up purple?

“Highland Council’s Speech and Language Therapists were helping to raise awareness of Developmental Language Disorder (DLD) in the local area. While it can be a hidden but common disability among children and adults, many people have never heard of the condition…” explains Specialist Speech and Language Therapist, Crystelle Mountford.

This year the world is lighting up purple and yellow to shine light on Developmental Language Disorder. Cameron Square took part, alongside the likes of the CN Tower in Canada, Niagara Falls in the USA and the Perth Sky Ribbon Bridge in Australia.

Crystelle says: “We are trying to raise the profile of DLD which refers to difficulties learning language. This includes speaking and understanding. It also involves reading and writing. DLD can have other effects on development, including social skills and emotional well-being. Without recognition and support, the impacts of DLD can last into adulthood by increasing the risk of unemployment and reducing the opportunity to be independent.”

These words are from a child with DLD.

“It’s when you have difficulties talking and understanding words. It affects children and adults. It’s just like speaking a different language, you’re oblivious to what they are saying. You just want them to speak English. Not those big words. It just makes it way more harder. You really, really want to say something and it just stops. Your brain has just gone, is that the word, no its not, is it this one, no its not. It’s picking out those different things. I just want it to teleport to the other person’s head so they know what it means and they get what I’m trying to say to them as quickly as I can.”

Support can make a real difference. To help your child with their communication skills, phone ‘Just Ask’ on 07785477868 (Tuesday 2 - 5) or the local speech and language therapy service on 01397 709856. Referrals are not necessary, just phone.

Crystelle added: “Thanks go to Highland Council’s lighting team for turning the Cameron Square purple and helping to raise awareness of DLD.”

22 Oct 2019
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