All Blog Entries

Erin speaks as Alumni Ambassador

14 Feb 2020

We recently enjoyed a morning of tea and biscuits at the Speakers Trust office, and for good reason – we were joined by our Alumni Ambassadors Group. This group is composed of young speakers whom have taken part in the “Speak Out” Challenge! with the aim of sharing their experience of every aspects of the programme from in-school workshop through to Grand Final. Their purpose is to help shape improvements for the future young people that will participate in “Speak Out” Challenge!.

Erin Stoner represented Westcliff High School For Girls was crowned the winner at the 2017-18 “Speak Out” Challenge! Southend and Rochford Regional Final. Her speech about her personal experience, ‘A Speech For Speech’ saw her through to the Grand Final where she was crowned Grand Champion 2018. 

We asked Erin to cast her mind back to that speech; “My speech was about growing up with a stutter and how it affected my life growing up, as well as how it affects me now. It focussed on showing what having a stutter is really like and displaying it in a more realistic light to encourage people to understand stuttering better.”

Since the Grand Final, Erin has appeared on ITV News, contributed an article to stamma.org to celebrate Stuttering Awareness Day, represented her peers at Speakers Trust fundraising events and of course, become a Speakers Trust Alumni Ambassador. 

When asked what attracted her to becoming an alumni ambassador, Erin said the key factors of being an Ambassador are;

 “being able to join a team that gave so much to me so that I can promote giving other students the fantastic opportunities I had.”

Lastly we asked Erin; how would you like your involvement to impact the programme or other young people?

“I want them to understand that you don’t have to be a pitch perfect speaker all the time to get up on stage and speak well.”

She continued to share; “Yes, I still stutter when I talk to my mum about my day at school but I can still speak on a stage!”

Listen to Erin share her experience of living with a stammer.