A communications masterclass!

Using her public speaking skills and the power of social media, Ellie Grudgings is helping to transform the lives of young disabled people in Leicestershire. Here’s how she’s making a difference for the Menphys charity.


Due to her learning disability, 26-year-old Ellie can find it difficult to say the words she would like to say face-to-face. Alongside her public speaking, the mum-of-one has mastered social media platforms like Twitter to deliver a positive message.

  • Ellie selects relevant information and imagery to create engaging posts.
  • Having the time to type her content helps Ellie to express herself clearly.
  • Hashtags and shares enable Ellie to reach more people.

Mastering public speaking

As an ambassador for Menphys, Ellie delivers awareness assembly talks to primary-aged children. She has overcome the challenge of speaking in public with support and mentoring from staff and her family.

  • Ellie encourages schools to take part in themed activity days, sessions and events to promote inclusion and help the charity deliver services to disabled families.
  • She follows guided presentations and has successfully delivered speeches and events, including film nights and garden parties.
  • By raising the charity’s public profile, Ellie enables more families and young people with additional needs to learn about the services they can access.


Ellie’s approachable and passionate personality has made her a fantastic ambassador for Menphys’ fundraising efforts.

As a positive role model for the disabled community in Leicestershire, she has secured some excellent raffle prizes and her contributions help to ensure the sustainability of services and projects for SEND families and lower the number of vulnerable people experiencing unmet needs.

How does it feel to be a Learning Disability and Autism Leader?

“I am proud to be the winner of this award, as well as representing my work and other young people with Disabilities and Special Educational Needs.  I love my job and the people I work with at Menphys.”

“I think it’s inspiring how she speaks for many people despite it being such a challenge. I think her work is admirable and it brings me joy to know that there are people speaking out for others. It is so important to work with schools as it should reduce bullying by understanding and respecting difference.” – Leaders’ List 2019 Judge