Meet Aileen

Jo Jingles Stirling

For 17 years speech and language therapist Aileen Robinson specialised in medicine for the elderly before working for a medical charity for a further 10 years. But in 2009, (with her own elderly parent to care for) she chose to draw a line between her home and professional life and decided it was time for a change. Today she has progressed to teaching an entirely new language; the language of music and song for preschool children in Stirling.

Aileen has always loved making music with little ones “The benefits of music for speech and language development with children are well documented and I felt that this was an opportunity to combine what had previously been a hobby with many of the principles from my professional background.”

Attracted by the professionalism of Jo Jingles, Aileen believed that the stability of national support, brand and identity was something that couldn’t be overlooked or underestimated when starting a new business, she explains: “Although running the actual sessions wasn’t so daunting for me due to my past experience leading clubs and choirs, I found the new challenges on the business side of becoming self-employed a real learning curve. But although I don’t always find this stuff easy, I’m learning more every day and it is very rewarding to watch my business grow and prosper.”

Aileen had considered music as a profession when she was at school but her mother (a music teacher) encouraged her to stick with it as a hobby. “At this stage in my life however, I am able to combine my hobby and use my love of creating music with children to benefit my everyday business life.”

Aileen has big plans for her franchise in the future and has now taken on a class teacher to further expand her business into other regions. Bringing her classes to local nurseries in Stirling is also proving beneficial and she would like to grow this side of her business over the next few years too. “I like to hope that as I move into my sixties and beyond, I can hand over more of the active sessions to a younger class teacher while still keeping my hand in, after all my knees aren’t what they used to be!”

Watching young children develop and build confidence over time is so rewarding for Aileen. “To see a young child who could barely move from their mum’s side, take small steps towards participation and independence is a wonderful thing to witness and I am thrilled to be part of that.”

Aileen’s impressive business development also secured her the Scotland – Jo Jingles Regional Franchisee of the Year 2014.

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