Variety of Alberta

“Assistive technology has given our son, Albert, the opportunity to engage in play and independent communication in ways that we feared might never have been possible.”

Albert, a four-year old amazing little boy, was born with Spastic Quadriplegic Cerebral Palsy causing him to have limited mobility and minimal hand use.

Albert began using assistive technology from an early age and used his first switch activated toy – a stuffed dog that barks and begs when activated with a jellybean switch before he was a year old. Though extremely effective for children who have limited control of their hands, switch adapted toys and iPad switch adapters can be quite expensive and with each developmental stage or learned activity, the costs to purchase new devices and/or software can add significant costs to a family.

Variety Alberta partnered with a local organization that specializes in communicative devices and donated funds for the purchase of 12 communicative iPad kits. These kits have been developed to match 12 children’s needs (including Albert’s) and down the road will be donated back to the local organization to use with other children in the program.

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“Albert loves playing with his new iPad kit. When we read stories, he uses a switch button with which he can tell us to “turn the page”. He has had fun learning these new skills through play, and he gets to be just like other kids.”

Assistive technology devices have proven to be essential tools that have enabled Albert to engage in the activities typically developing toddlers love. Through play and using switch activated toys that respond to his commands, Albert has been able to slowly develop some muscle control allowing him to engage in activities that typically developing toddlers love.

“We are thankful for the support that we have been given that allows Albert to begin to achieve autonomy and independence as he grows.“

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