Our Story

Get to know us.

Our Name

It all started with a pair of earrings purchased at Mariposa Market in Orillia… one earring said ‘speak’ and the other said ‘freely’. Such a fitting purchase for a speech-language pathologist! And perfect for a small private practice.

From those earrings emerged a number of meanings, which have evolved over time.

The first meaning refers to our aspirations for our clients. For most of us, the ability to talk developed naturally when we were young children and we don’t even remember what it was like to not have that skill. As adults we take for granted the effortlessness and power of talking. Children and adults who have communication challenges, however, have not experienced the same learn-by-osmosis and take-for-granted skills. One of the hopes we have for the clients we support is that our services will help them be able to experience the joy of ‘speaking freely’ – effective and easy, with no effort required.

Another meaning for ‘Speak Freely’ refers to both our clients and their extended family, educators, employers, etc. For all those individuals, we strive to create an atmosphere where their opinions and feelings are respected. Everyone who interacts with us quickly learns that they can ‘speak freely’ and be heard.

The third meaning of ‘Speak Freely’ has grown as the staff size has grown. We believe that an environment of caring, sharing and mutual support facilitates a healthy environment for staff that spills over into client care. No office politics or drama allowed on the Speak Freely team!

With all the services that our diverse and talented group provides, we could easily add ‘play freely’, ‘work freely’, ‘write freely’, ‘move freely’ and ‘think freely’ to our name…  but we believe that “Speak Freely” summarizes it nicely. So simple and yet so complete.

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“Joyce Hignett and her staff are knowledgeable and thorough. They know when to push and when to let up. My child gets the full undivided attention of his therapist when he is at Speak Freely and I find he learns more in his one hour session than I ever expected. My child has been with Speak Freely Therapy Services since opening.”

– parent

“There are no ulterior motives at Speak Freely Therapy Services. These are dedicated professionals who give 100% of themselves with the best interest of your child in mind. Highly expert, friendly, compassionate, with a high degree of integrity: I trust them. Our son has been a regular there for over a year and the gains are amazing. He has grown so much with their help. We’ve used both the OT and speech services and highly, highly recommend.”

– JJ, parent and teacher

“As an educational consultant who has worked with Joyce Hignett over a period of years, I have become aware of her dedication and determination to provide the most comprehensive and effective strategies possible in order to improve the speech/communication issues of her clients. I have been particularly impressed with her very direct, practical approach and that she understands the importance of providing a functional, meaningful context for communication as an integral part of her service.”

– LN, teacher and independent consultant

Our Office

149 Welham Road, Unit 19
Barrie, ON L4N 8Y3

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