Better Care

Landmark lights up for DLD awareness!

Light Up the Library of Birmingham for DLD Awareness Day


BCHC turns Library of Birmingham purple to mark Developmental Language Disorder Awareness Day

As many as one in 14 children has a developmental language disorder (DLD).

Imagine sitting in a classroom unable to understand what is being said but being expected to achieve the same as your peers. Welcome to the life of the two children in the average classroom who are faced with this reality every day.

Limited awareness of DLD among educators and the general public means these children are being overlooked and the lifelong impact can be devastating. This is tragic because, with the right support, people with DLD can thrive!

Raising awareness of developmental language disorder (RADLD) is an international campaign helping to increase awareness of this hidden, but common, condition. This year’s awareness-raising them is #DLDSeeMe  and brings families, teachers, speech pathologists and other professionals together to make DLD visible.

To demonstrate BCHC's support, speech and language therapist Paula Price - an advanced specialist in DLD - persuaded Birmingham City Council to light up the Library of Birmingham in DLD - See Me campaign colour purple - joining civic buildings, monuments, clock towers, museums, stadiums, bridges, castles and squares as far afield as Australia, USA, France, Greece - as well as in towns and cities up and down the UK to mark DLD Awareness Day. 

“I'm very excited about this year’s international Developmental Language Disorder (DLD) Awareness Day," said Paula (pictured, front left).

"DLD Awareness Day is a special day when the speech and language therapy community comes together to shed light on DLD and help raise awareness. 

"It is an often very complex and lifelong, hidden disability which can affect all areas of communication, from difficulties understanding what people say to struggling to articulate ideas and feelings.  DLD can impact hugely on all areas of a person’s life.

"It is a privilege and honour to work with and support the children and young people with DLD in Birmingham as well as their families and education settings. 

"I'd like to thank the Library of Birmingham for lighting up purple and a special thanks to Coun Jayne Francis, who has sponsored this fantastic occasion and made this light-up event possible.", 

Further information

  • Developmental Language Disorder (DLD) refers to difficulties learning language and affects approximately 7 per cent of the population. This makes it seven times more common than autism and 46 times more common than childhood hearing impairment.

  • DLD causes difficulties with speaking, understanding and reading - with high risk of dyslexia. The complexity of DLD means that it can have a serious and long-term impact on development.

  • People with DLD are six times more likely to suffer from anxiety and three times more likely to have clinical depression. They are also at significant risk of struggling with reading, spelling and mathematics. Although DLD is a common condition affecting many areas of life, children with DLD are unlikely to receive access to services, particularly for girls. DLD has also been the focus of significantly less research than other conditions.

  • Developmental Language Disorder Awareness Day, now in its fourth year, is celebrated annually around the world with more than 30 countries involved in 2019.

  • This year the world is lighting up purple and yellow in more than 25 locations to shine light on this condition with landmarks across Australia, Canada, UK and US shining bright.