Annual AAC Picnic, 20 October 2018

October was AAC Awareness Month, and the 2018 theme was “Dare
to LEAD”. To follow this theme, the theme of this year’s AAC Voice
picnic was “What’s your superpower?” Our day of
fun included mask-making, vision board creating, playing boccia,
and plenty of chat between AAC users and their


Mentoring for AAC users – an opinion

AAC Voice member, Fiona Bridger, has recently written an opinion piece outlining the mentoring and support needed by people with communication disabilities and people who use AAC. It is a great read, and highlights the importance of being surrounded by a strong supportive network.

Read her blog post here

The new NDIS – an opinion

The National Disability Insurance Scheme is a noble idea, but so far has not been as effective as intended, writes AAC Voice member Fiona Bridger in a recent blog post.

Fiona sees problems in the way the NDIS planners assess the support needs of people with disabilities.

Fiona is an AAC user with an active interest in public policy. Read her article on her blog, Silver Lining.

AAC Voice encourages all AAC users to express their opinions on the NDIS and other matters that affect their lives. Let us know what you are doing or thinking, and we’ll do our bit to pass on the word.

Big screen viewing of AGOSCI webinar on Minspeak

On 15 March 2018, AAC Voice hosted a screening of Siobhan Daley’s AGOSCI Webinar on Minspeak. The event was well attended and it was great to see a number of new faces.

Siobhan gave a very candid presentation about her Minspeak journey. Minspeak is an iconic language that uses two or three icons to make a word. Being a Minspeak user myself, I appreciated the challenges Siobhan talked about in learning the language. I am still learning after many years and I am part of the group of ladies that Siobhan referred to who have Minspeak competitions on some weekends. Siobhan always wins.

Although I think Minspeak is a great system, it is important to acknowledge that it is not for everyone. You have to have a great deal of self motivation to learn the system. At the event it was evident that we are still lacking speech pathology support to learn any AAC system, let alone Minspeak.

Some of our members are over 65 and therefore do not qualify for the NDIS yet they still require speech pathology to help them to reach their communication potential. This support is currently out of reach for them. It is not right to stop people communicating after they turn 65. Communication is basic human right for all human beings.

I would like to sincerely thank AGOSCI for their permission for us to screen the webinar and Liberator for supplying the snacks for us to enjoy while we watched.

Fiona Given
AAC Voice President

AAC Voice Picnic: Saturday 14 October 2017 – Bobbin Head, Sydney

AAC Voice Picnic: Saturday 14 October 2017 – Bobbin Head, Sydney

The 2017 picnic was the biggest yet held by AAC Voice, with AAC users and their allies from all over Sydney and a large contingent who came down from Newcastle for the day.

The picnic provided a great networking opportunity for AAC users, parents and friends. It was especially nice to welcome new AAC Voice members who came along to their first event- we acknowledge how unnerving this can be, and we look forward to seeing you at future AAC Voice events.

Bobbin Head was a beautiful location for the picnic and we are planning to hold the 2018 picnic there again.

A huge thank you to AGOSCI and the volunteer Speech Pathology students from Sydney University for assisting with the smooth running of the picnic day.