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Annual General Meeting

The 2013 Annual General Meeting was held on December 4th at the TalkLink officies in Auckland. It was a great turn out, with Barrie and Anitia from our South Island office sharing some of the achievements in the South Island over the past year. It was great to see positive feedback about our assessment process and the progress our clients have been making as a result of access to augmentatvie communication tools and strategies. We were also grateful that Geneva Tino one of out Auckland clients was able to share information about her long-time association with TalkLink. Here is the text from the speech she presented at the AGM::


Hi, my name is Geneva Tino, and I am currently studying at A U T University, completing a Bachelor in Communication Studies. I have successfully completed 2 years, but due to my physical inabilities it is realistic that it will take me another 3 years until I graduate. I have been a client of TalkLink for fifteen years now, and the service has helped me so much, by finding communication devices that best equip my needs to be able to communicate to the world. TalkLink has supported me throughout my educational life from primary, secondary and now in tertiary studies. I have been very happy with the service that I have received from TalkLink to date. They have been very accommodating of my needs looking at every option available as my needs change in regards to communicating. As a non-verbal person, TalkLink has provided me with a voice. I believe that if I had not had the help from TalkLink I wouldn’t be where I am today. We all know that to be successful in this world one needs to be able to communicate there needs, desires and wishes. In the world of the non-verbal we depend solely on communication aids. For me communication is the most important thing. It is important to me that people with disabilities are well represented and that authorities or decision makers hear their needs and concerns. Social media is one method in which we need to take advantage of, highlighting issues and concerns of the disabled community. Breaking down the barriers and making our city the most livable city in the world for all is my ambition. I was hoping to present to you a group presentation I was part of at university, however, most of the group are busy with work now that the year is over. Our presentation was about Cerebral Palsy and the social barriers people with disabilities face. It followed the journey of my life and how I had to prove myself to people that I was more than capable to do anything. We decided to focus on how doctors predicted my life the moment I was born, how hard it was for my mother to find a primary school I could go to, how I was undermined by the deputy principal when I was appointed as a prefect and how people had doubts about my decision to go to A U T. With each of these challenges, we spoke about how I overcame the challenge. It was through me having a voice through the communication aid that changed their perception of me, not only seeing me as a disabled and nonverbal person but a person with determination and drive. Thank you for listening.


Awesome Geneva, thank you for sharing your journey with us.Geneva has also written an article in our TalkLink Trust – Annual Report 2013

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Ann Smaill

Ann Smaill

General Manager, Speech Language Therapist at The Talklink Trust
I am the General Manager of the TalkLink Trust, and also a speech-language therapist. I have been working with people who have complex communication needs for many years.
Ann Smaill

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