If you stutter, you have FRIENDS

FRIENDS is the only national organization dedicated solely to empowering young people who stutter and their families.
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Join Us in Baltimore, July 16 - 18th, 2020 FRIENDS 23rd Annual Convention

16 jul 2020 – 18 jul 2020

Baltimore, MD

Annual Convention

Join us in Baltimore, Maryland for the FRIENDS’ 23rd annual convention. Meet kids, parents, siblings, and SLPs all hoping for the same unforgettable time as you. When you leave on Sunday, we are positive you will tell your new FRIENDS how happy you are that you decided to come to a FRIENDS convention, followed by a ‘See you next year!’ An important component to the FRIENDS convention is shared meal times as well as social gatherings in the evenings. Please take advantage of our tween, teen and adult hospitality rooms. You can expect this to be an amazing three-days of laughter, education, tears, support, hugs, and FRIENDSHIP. Enjoy!

New research on the impact of Friends

Why attend a Friends Convention? We partnered with researchers at the University of Iowa to understand the positive impact our conventions have on young people who stutter. They found the following five results:

  1. Children and teenagers built strong relationships and a sense of community in a safe environment.
  2. Collaborative learning facilitated personal growth.
  3. Communicative and cognitive changes persisted beyond the convention.
  4. Hearing and sharing personal stories increased self-acceptance and acceptance of others.
  5. Living with stuttering can be hard, but the convention helped normalize stuttering.

Our Mission

FRIENDS aims to provide support, education and empowerment to children and teens who stutter, their families and clinicians.

Our annual conventions and regional one day conferences provide the opportunities for life-changing experiences that can impact long lasting feelings about stuttering and offer new hope for a life with stuttering. FRIENDS seeks to make life easier for young people who stutter and their families.

Our Story

In 1997, FRIENDS was founded by John Ahlbach and Lee Caggiano to meet the need for organized support and education for young people who stutter and their families. Over the years, we have expanded into a national organization that hosts a large annual convention each July and many regional one-day conferences around the country throughout the year.

Annual Conventions

One Day Conferences

Attendees

Explore FRIENDS

Stepping Up

A teen mentoring program gives teens who stutter the opportunity to support children who stutter.

Regional One-Day Conferences

Full days of group activities, presentations, and panels designed to offer support and information to children and families 

Annual Convention

A 3-day immersive convention with abundant support, family-oriented events, keynote speakers, and workshops for all

We felt like we ‘belonged’ as soon as we arrived at the hotel. We benefitted so much from hearing of other families’ journeys, their challenges and their victories.

– John, convention attendee

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