Children with life-limiting illnesses at Andy’s at St Andrew’s Hospice in Grimsby have received an incredible donation of specialist assistive technology worth thousands of pounds from national children’s charity Lifelites.
Every moment is precious for these children, and the technology which Lifelites has donated can help them do things they never thought possible. They can play games with their friends, be creative with art and music, control something for themselves and communicate with their family, perhaps for the very first time. Most importantly it can help them create and record precious memories which will be treasured by their loved ones forever.
A Lifelites package of equipment, which includes training and technical support services provided by the charity costs around £50,000 over its four year lifespan, and is donated completely free of charge. Lifelites will replace the technology every four years.
The young people at Andy’s are one of the first children’s hospices in the country to receive a donation of Virtual Reality (VR) technology from Lifelites. This technology can immerse these young people in make believe worlds, or to take them to the other side of the planet, all from the comfort of the hospice. They can fly in space, go on safari, sit under the Northern Lights or even climb Mount Everest.
The children also received an Eyegaze. This is a piece of equipment which allows those with limited mobility to control a computer using just their eyes. By using the Eyegaze, children who struggle to communicate with their family and their carers are able to do so – often for the first time.
The charity also donated a whole host of other equipment, specially adapted for the children at the hospice. The package includes iPads and touchscreen computers with suitable apps, games and communication software, cameras to record memories and video games consoles with adapted controllers.