Foundation Recognizes Successful Blacks Who Have Overcome Stuttering
Sherrikka Myers, who grew up stuttering and later overcame it, says Every 1 Voice Matters, a 501(c)3 nonprofit, wants to recognize the many successful individuals who are important role models today. Her foundation is setting out to empower children from all gender, race and ethnicity overcome stuttering. These celebrities and athletes are sending a message to these children, that with a little bit of confidence, they can live very successful and fulfilling lives.
Some of the most prominent names include TV and radio personality Steve Harvey, game show host Wayne Brady, actors Samuel L. Jackson, James Earl Jones, and athletes, such as golfer Tiger Woods, famed running back Adrian Peterson, NBA star Shaquille O'Neill, blues great B.B. King, R&B's Bill Withers, Hip-Hop artist Kendrick Lamar and ABC Chief National Correspondent Byron Pitts.
"I've worked with many kids who have had low self-esteem and behaved inappropriately, because they were afraid others would notice that they stuttered," said Myers, 43, who works with her 8-year-old grandson who also stutters. "When the kids look at these amazing celebrities and what they've accomplished, I know that gives them great hope and help them realize they can accomplish their goals as well."
The Every1Voice Matters Foundation is designed to initially assist children ages 5 to 10 to gain and build self-esteem and confidence. Myers is partnering with local speech pathologists, schools and churches to offer children free and low-cost services. She plans on expanding the program to students in middle and high school.
In the U.S., more than three million Americans stutter, most of whom are males and about 5 percent of all children stutter for a period of six months or more, according to The Stuttering Foundation.
The Foundation is currently offering several programs:
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