Life-limited and disabled children at East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) in Milton have received an incredible donation of specialist assistive technology worth thousands of pounds from national children’s charity Lifelites.
Lifelites makes magical memories for children at Cambridgeshire hospice
Every second counts for these children, and the technology which Lifelites has donated can help them do they 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. The charity will replace the technology every four years.
EACH in Milton is one of the first 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.
Helen Thrower, EACH Play Specialist, said: “We’re all very excited to receive this donation. For obvious reasons, it’s not always easy to keep the mind of a young person with a life-threatening condition occupied by all the joys of childhood, but this technology, with its ability to completely immerse, will certainly help. We really look forward to seeing how the children we offer care take to using it and thank Lifelites for their support.”
Simone Enefer-Doy, Chief Executive of Lifelites said: “We are delighted to be able to provide this magical technology for the children and young people at EACH Milton. This technology will help them escape the confines of their conditions to do things they never dreamed of, for as long as it is possible. We couldn’t have provided this package if it wasn’t for the generosity of our donors, so for this we are incredibly grateful.”
Lifelites has donated equipment to every children’s hospice in the British Isles over the past 18 years, and continues to provide new technology and ongoing support to ensure that children in hospices have unlimited possibilities.
Lifelites was only able to donate this equipment thanks to the generosity of donors. They were Freemasons from Northamptonshire and Cambridgeshire, Rushden LAMS, Children with Cancer UK, GamesAid and Microsoft.
Image: Abbie using the Eyegaze at EACH Milton
East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) aims to maximise the quality of life for children and young people with a life-limiting or life-threatening condition, and to support their families.