In fact it's one little thing.... That goes by the name of the Apple iPad and although I know this sounds like a strong statement, it has changed Lyla’s, and in turn, our lives.

We applied to Family Fund for help towards the cost of an iPad 4 years ago after reading about this amazing AAC (augmentative and alternative assistive) software that could help Lyla communicate. We were so fortunate to have been granted the award and that's not only where our journey with Family Fund started but also the turning point to make it easier for Lyla to access the world that she found so confusing.

 

Within days of receiving the iPad she was already doing shape sorting, puzzles and dot 2 dots. She had gone from running up and down the lounge and getting distressed easily through frustration to being engaged. We started to see a glimmer of a smile as she became more confident with the apps and feeling a sense of accomplishment once she had learnt something new. 

As parents it made us realise that she did want to learn and she did have the ability to engage but technology was the key to open the door to her world. 

The iPad has almost become Lyla’s comfort blanket and has meant we can access everyday situations without too much distress. The shopping centre, a restaurant, a family party, hospital appointments, even going on a plane. Armed with her iPad and her ear defenders Lyla is happy to venture into the outside world when previously we couldn't even travel in the car without her becoming distressed and having a meltdown. As technology is now widely available in schools and more targeted to the younger generation Lyla now has common ground with her peers.

As for the AAC software.We are still In the early stages but Lyla is improving her skills every single week and eventually this will give her the opportunity  to have a voice ...

Watch this space 

"Technology is nothing. What's important is that you have a faith in people, that they're basically good and smart, and if you give them tools, they'll do wonderful things with them. "

Steve Jobs - Apple 

Family Fund is currently running a Digital Skills Programme. For more information about the work we’re doing, please email us