Tuesday, August 13, 2013

AT Funding Success Story

At the AT Network, we love to learn about the innovative ways that our partners assist  consumers in seeking funding options for AT devices and equipment. Jorge Ruiz, Assistive Technology Coordinator at Center Coast Center for Independent Living (CCCIL) in Salinas, sent us the following success story and we wanted to share it with our readers.  
Juan Jose came to CCCIL in 2012 seeking assistance in transitioning out of a skilled nursing facility where he had been a resident for close to three months.  He is a young man with a diagnosis of C3 Quadriplegia and relies on help from caregivers and technology in order to live as independently as possible.

Juan Jose sits in an electric wheelchair in his room. You can see his bed and some posters up behind him.
Juan Jose
Watching television is an activity that Juan Jose enjoys, but each time he wanted to watch TV, he would have to find and ask someone to assist him.  When I became aware of the Voice IR, an assistive technology device that is able to operate anything with an infrared receiver, it was clear to me that my consumer would benefit greatly from this technology. 

However, due to the high price and limited resources that are available to him, he was not able to purchase the device on his own.  It was for this reason that we reached out to the Change a Life Foundation for funding and support.

We submitted an initial application in June 2012 however the application was not taken into consideration for that grant cycle. Fortunately, the applications remain on file and it was taken into consideration in April of 2013. We were thrilled to find out that it was accepted for funding in May of 2013.

Picture of the device VoiceIR Envirnomental Controller Configurator that is oblong, thin and stands on 3 short legs.  Looks similar to a cable box.

VoiceIR Environmental Voice Controller Configurator

Receiving the Voice IR has become a life changing experience for Juan Jose.  For the first time in over 16 years he is able to power-on his television, change channels and adjust the volume on his own.  He is able to navigate “Netflix” and select what movies he wants to watch.  Many of us take this every day occurrence for granted, but for Juan, this device is a major benefit to his independence, as it has allowed him to make his own choices independently.

And, this is just the beginning. Juan will also be programming his other electronic equipment using the Voice IR, integrating the additional hardware that came with the device in order to manipulate the lights and other power devices like his fan and humidifier.  

We hope that Juan's story inspires people everywhere to never give up on those  important pieces of AT that  allow them to be more independent. For more funding ideas, here is a recent archived training by the AT Network entitled: Find It! Fund It! Technology and Gadgets to Increase Independence.  

For more trainings, visit our Calender page at: http://www.atnet.org/news-events/calendar.php

Do you have an AT funding success story to share?  Post it below in our comment box. 

No comments:

Post a Comment