‘Surprise Surprise’, prisons & SLT

Although I don’t spend a lot of my time watching TV, I do have my favourite shows that I enjoy watching and tonight one of them was on. ‘Surprise Surprise’ on ITV is one of my favourites as it celebrates achievements and wonderful acts of kindness that some people perform day in, day out. On tonight’s episode there was a lady called Jacqui from The Cascade who works in prisons, helping people with dyslexia learn to read and write so that they can leave prison more well equipped to continue learning throughout their life. Hearing some of the individuals’ stories about how much this lady had helped them was heartwarming. So often many people are written off due to the fact that they have been in prison and all too often are incorrectly judged and perceived to be evil people. I am not for one minute condoning criminal acts and I am all for punishing people who have behaved inappropriately. But not everyone has ended up ‘inside’ for the same reason and I can’t help but feel sorry for some individuals who end up in trouble.
One of the men whom the lady on the programme had helped was very open about the fact that he had not had a great upbringing and so at the age of 15 was living on his own. He mixed with the wrong crowd and then ended up in prison, poorly educated and feeling underwhelmed with life. Since developing his reading and writing skills, the man has been offered a job with The Cascade with Jacqui and now leads a life full of hope and success.
This particular section of the episode caught my attention as one line of work Speech and Language Therapists can take on is working within youth offender’s institutes, helping people to improve themselves so that when they leave and return to the wider world, they feel more confident in their abilities to speak, read and write, and communicate with others. Watching programme’s like this not only uplift me and prove that there are good people in this world who do positive things to help other people, but also encourage me to keep striving towards my goals and dream job. Especially with exam results day looming, it is more important than ever for me to keep my motivation levels high. Even if I don’t quite get the results I need to get into University this year, nothing is going to stop me trying again the year after. I am determined to become a SLT and I’m going to do everything I can to achieve this. And I hope that anyone reading this also feels encouraged to strive towards their goals- whether it be a hobby you want to progress in, a sport you want to succeed in, a job you want to secure etc. Whatever it may be, I wish you all the best. And remember, never give up. 🙂


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