dyslexia – setting up a support group

Lettere01gorgoWhen I operated the Swindon Dyslexia Centre, we used to receive hundreds of calls each year asking how you go about setting up a support group in their area.

It is not difficult at all. We all need help and support at some time or another. When your child has special needs, it is easy to feel as if you are the only one in the world. There are thousands of children who have problems with their education. What is needed is to bring parents together to enable them to talk the issues through – to help and advise each other. Your problem will not be a new one. If you are suffering because of it – you can bet there are others out there in the same position.


Why not set up a Dyslexia Support Group?


Why not form a support group in your area? It isn’t as hard as you may think! If you need it, there must be others who will be feeling the same. Don’t wait until someone else does it – because they might not! How do I go about it?

1. Ask other parents, to see if they are interested in joining.
2. Visit your local library, citizens’ advice bureau or other voluntary agencies to see if they have any information that may help you.
3. Ask yourself, what exactly is needed in your area?
4. Do you want to have meetings every week/month?
5. Where will your meetings be? (The first meeting will probably best to be held in a local hall.)
6. Contact the national charity to see what help they can offer.
7. It may be possible to get a guest speaker for your first meeting from a national organisation.
8. Ask other parents to give you a hand. If you don’t ask, you don’t get, that is my maxim – you can’t do everything yourself! It may seem hard at the start but keep going – it gets easier.

Advertising your group

No, I don’t mean by paying for advertisements with the local press. My company does not have an advertising budget at all. The local radio and newspapers need local news – let them know what you are doing. Just contact them by; email, letter or telephone. Don’t forget local news is their business!

How can I arrange a Press Release?

The quickest way to let the press know is a Press Release. Don’t panic. This is very easy. It is just like writing a letter and then taking out all the chitchat, leaving only the bones. Something similar to the one enclosed will be sufficient.

Don’t forget: If you need help, so do other people in the same situation!