Thanks to the generosity of our supporters, Muscular Dystrophy UK’s Independence through Technology appeal has raised £100,000 to date for a pilot to provide assistive equipment. The scheme will focus on items for people who are losing muscle strength in their fingers, hands and arms, and therefore finding it difficult to use touch-based technology due to limited movement.
In allocating these funds, we envisage the grants will be used for items to aid communication, for example by making it easier to access a computer or communicate online. This could be a ‘switch interface’ to enable wheelchair controls or other items (a large button or micro-joystick) to operate IT/communication devices, eye- or voice-activated hardware or software, or a lightweight laptop or tablet (with specialist communication features), to meet individual needs.
Funding towards equipment will be according to our tariff; please see how much you can expect to be awarded for more information and to see what items can be applied for.
To access this assistive equipment funding, applicants will need to complete a simple form and supply a letter of support from a healthcare professional (Care Advisor, Neuromuscular Nurse, Physiotherapist or Occupational Therapist), and a quote for the item of equipment. The application will be considered by the Joseph Patrick Trust (the welfare fund within Muscular Dystrophy UK).
The first applications will be considered for funding at the JPT Grants Panel meeting in early August 2015, and then at each meeting afterwards, as funds allow. The meetings are held every three months – see application deadlines for more information. Find out more and apply online.
Learning from this pilot, we hope to roll-out to an expanded Muscular Dystrophy UK assistive technology programme over the next two years.
It is only through your contributions that we can continue to fund the vital work that takes us closer to finding treatments and cures for muscle-wasting conditions. Donate now and help change the lives of thousands of people living with these conditions.