Squeals of joy as Ethan starts gaming

Friday, February 14th, 2020

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smiling seated boy with adapted games controller

Smiles all round here. It’s always extra special when we can help someone like Ethan, who’s facing a complex mix of challenges. He’s non-verbal and has cerebral palsy which, among other things, severely restricts his movements and dexterity, especially on his left side. But he was desperate to play games so our therapists Frankie and Jacob, pre-lockdown, went to see if they could help.

“He can’t use the buttons or joystick on a control pad with both hands,” said Jacob, “but with patience and concentration he can hit individual buttons.” That was the starting point for Jacob and Frankie to find a solution.

“We found that he could use a large joystick firmly fixed to a tray, so we added four large button switches to act as the face buttons. With motivation from his parents and clear labels on the switches, he’s started to explore games for the very first time on his own!”

“He squealed with joy when he first moved the stick. And when we left, he was busy exploring the open levels in Lego City Undercover and Toy Story 3.”

It’s a gaming start with a promising future, and we wish Ethan and his family many hours of fun and inclusion.