For most of us, there is nothing simpler than having a conversation with someone, whether it is to ask how they are or how their day is going; communication is a vital part of our everyday lives.
But sadly for some children who use one of the 50 children and baby hospices across the British Isles, even saying 'Mum' is a battle, as their condition means they cannot speak.
Over the years, the Masonically-inspired charity Lifelites has sought to overcome this barrier by being the only charity to provide specialist, educational and assistive technologies with software that gives the children a chance to communicate. Through the magic of technology, Lifelites gives severely ill and disabled children opportunities they would not otherwise have. From one button switches to technology that can be operated with just their eyes, a child can speak through an iPad or big screen and tell their mum that they love them.
Lifelites knows that the latest technology packages make these experiences accessible to every child and have brought new opportunities for the children to enhance their stay in hospices. Most children in hospices will not reach adulthood and the Lifelites technology helps them to achieve their potential, to learn and play and to be creative, communicate and control something for themselves.
Today, Lifelites has projects in every children's hospice supporting over 9000 children and their families. The packages that Lifelites provides consist of more than just technology and equipment. It is an ongoing service which means their dedicated technical support team is available to maintain the technology when called upon. In addition to this, a training manager has been appointed to provide training to the hospice care staff to help them really get the most out of the technology with the children they work with. The hospices do not pay a penny towards the cost of these packages as Lifelites raises all their own funds.
In 2014, thanks to the Province of Nottinghamshire, who partnered with the Province of Leicestershire and Rutland, Lifelites were able to donate a brand new package to Rainbows children's hospice in Leicester which cares for children from the Nottinghamshire area. With the generous donation, Lifelites provided the hospice with a terrific bundle including and EyeGaze package, specialist iPad packages including grip cases, HP touchscreen PC's and much more. Without the support of these two Provinces the children at Rainbows would not have the opportunities they do now.
Originally a Freemasons' millennium project, Lifelites became a charity in its own right in 2006 in order to sustain the good work started by Freemasons and present the opportunity to seek funds from both Masonic and non-Masonic sources. Lifelites raises all its own funds without support from central masonic sources and they do not benefit from the Festival system. With the donation of offices and accountancy services, overheads are kept to a minimum and Lifelites can ensure that all donations received can be used directly to provide their technology and services in order to improve the lives of children in hospices.
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Tel: 0207 4404200