THE children’s charity Lifelites has donated brand-new life-changing technology worth tens of thousands of pounds for life-limited and disabled children using the services of the children’s hospice Martin House in West Yorkshire.
All of the children cared for by Martin House have life-limiting or life-threatening conditions, made all the more difficult by the COVID-19 pandemic. The specialist technology, which Lifelites donated this year, can give them the opportunity to do things they and their parents never thought possible. This technology enables these children to play, be creative, control something for themselves, and communicate for as long as possible. Lifelites-donated technology enables children to escape the confines of their conditions, connect with their loved ones and communicate their wishes and fears, which is proving especially vital during this unsettling time.
The technology, along with training and technical support services, which Lifelites donates, costs around £50,000 over four years. After four years, Lifelites aims to return to replace the equipment with the latest, up-to-date technology that is bespoke and most suitable for the children using Martin House.
One of the pieces of equipment donated was the POD, a mobile and sensory pop-up tent that offers room for every child, no matter their needs. It comes in a rucksack so that hospice staff can easily bring it to children’s own homes as well. The sensory tent enables life-limited and disabled children to escape their often stressful lives and into their own world. They are surrounded by sea animals swimming all around them and can listen to built-in calming music at the same time.
The Tilt Table is another piece of equipment that Lifelites has donated and one of the latest additions to the Lifelites technology package. Thanks to a large touch screen that can be moved up and down and, as the name implies, tilted, every child, no matter their needs, can paint, play, and control something for themselves.
Simone Enefer-Doy, Chief Executive of Lifelites, said:
“Following a difficult year, Lifelites is delighted to be able to donate a package of magical technology for the children and young people using the services of Martin House. Every Lifelites-donated piece of equipment is specially adapted and accessible so that anyone, irrespective of their abilities, can use it. All of the Lifelites-donated technology is mobile so that hospice staff can reach every child in hospice as well as in children’s own homes. We know that every second counts for these children and their families.
“We couldn’t have provided this package if it wasn’t for the generosity of our supporters, so for this, we are incredibly grateful.”
Cath Todd, head of therapies and family support at Martin House, said:
“We would like to thank Lifelites on behalf of all the children and young people who get so much enjoyment from the amazing equipment they have provided to Martin House. The new technology we have received is already going down well, and we’re delighted to continue receiving this support from Lifelites – play is so important, and this technology empowers children with often severe disabilities to experience the joy of play for themselves.”
Lifelites has donated their equipment and services at every children’s hospice in the British Isles for the past 20 years and continues to provide new technology and ongoing support to ensure that children in hospices have a chance to escape the confines of their conditions.
Lifelites were only able to donate this package of technology due to the generosity of The George A Moore Foundation, The Lyndall Tree Foundation, The Freemason’s Charity of Yorkshire and East Riding and The Duke of Devonshire Charitable Trust.