Lifelites, the charity which provides specialist entertainment, educational and assistive technology packages to over 10,000 children and young people with life-limiting, life-threatening and disabling conditions in children’s hospices, has been awarded nearly £70,000 by GamesAid.
GamesAid is a charity, which represents the UK video gaming industry, raises hundreds of thousands of pounds every year that they then donate to a number of small children’s charities.
Lifelites were chosen by GamesAid to receive a donation that will help them to provide and maintain life-enhancing technology for terminally ill and disabled children at every children’s hospice across the British Isles. The money will go towards their latest project which is Virtual Reality.
The charity have already started work on the project and have already trialled VR experiences at Jacksplace Hospice for young people in Winchester, where the project proved extremely popular. The charity state: “We know that this technology has incredible potential to have an impact on the lives of young people with disabilities. It enables them to travel to places they never thought they’d go, and can immerse them in experiences they might never have had otherwise, such as riding a rollercoaster, swimming with dolphins or even flying a spaceship – all within the safety of the hospice walls.”
One of the young people who has been able to enjoy the VR at Jacksplace is Daniel. Daniel loves gaming and used to play a lot on his Xbox. However, due to the degenerative nature of his condition, he has lost mobility in his hands and arms and can no longer hold the controller. The VR equipment has made it possible for him to continue doing what he loves, and helps him to socialise and spend time with other young people at the hospice.
Claire Floyd, Play Specialist at Jacksplace said: “Daniel is very quiet, but the VR helps him socialise with some of our other young people. It brings them together and they’re able to meet other people who have the same problems they do, but they can just forget about that and be young people playing games. Whenever we schedule time on the VR at one of our day services, we get so many people coming in – they love it, and we’re so grateful to Lifelites and GamesAid for making it possible.”