Help Your Britain– Lifelites

This week we’re lending our homepage to small charities with the launch of our ‘Help Your Britain’ campaign, showcasing the work of five small UK charities throughout the week and enabling each cause to tell its own story.

There are more than 187,000 registered charities across Great Britain with a story to be told, many of whom will never be heard due to the lack of resources at their disposal. We’re shining the spotlight on these unsung British heroes as part of a long-term campaign, enabling you, the British public, to nominate the charities you would like to see featured on the homepage on the final Friday of each month via www.bing.com/HelpYourBritain.

Today is the turn of …

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Lifelites started out as a pilot project in 1999 with the idea of providing education and entertainment technology for children in hospices. Since then, its work has expanded to meet the growing demand from the mushrooming network of children’s hospices (currently 45) in England, Wales and Scotland, serving around 7,000 children and their families. For many children in these hospices, modified computers and other entertainment platforms enable them to play and interact with their families for the first time.

A Day in the Life of Simone Enefer-Doy, Lifelites Chief Executive

Simone Enefer-Doy joined children’s technology charity Lifelites as Chief Executive in 2006. The award-winning charity donates and maintains fun and educational technology for terminally ill children in all 45 of the UK’s children’s hospices. We followed her as she visited a brand new children’s hospice Grace House in Sunderland.

Wherever you are in the UK, there will be a Lifelites package near you, so I spend a lot of time on station platforms and motorways. It’s never dull; I love seeing the difference Lifelites makes to the lives of children in hospices and learning about the ways our technology is used.

Much of the technology in a Lifelites package is specially adapted for children with disabilities and life-limiting conditions. Assistive technology is so important; for many of them it will give them their first chance to play with others, or to express themselves with art and music. We know that one child uses the head-mouse we provide to talk to hospice staff and before we came along he had been very frustrated.

They’ve not finished building Grace House yet, but one of our technical support team and I went up to Sunderland to have a look and show some potential Lifelites donors how our technology can fit into this new environment.

<a href="http://video.uk.msn.com/?mkt=en-gb&amp;vid=1ec6c893-5cfe-4cd0-935d-c1b5e9e8beba&amp;from=&amp;src=v5:embed::" target="_new" title="Bing Charity - Life Lites">Video: Bing Charity &#8211; Life Lites</a>

Every children’s hospice is different; as each one is built they learn from each other and just get better and better. It’s great to be able to meet people like the brains behind the Grace House project Kathy Secker (a well known media personality from the region), and talk about how Lifelites can meet the technology requirements to support children in hospices.

We had a great day. It was all about potential, both in terms of the hospice care for children in Sunderland and how our technology can complement it. Every bit of our packages – from the digital camera to the state-of-the-art soundbeam – is reliant on donations from the public.

There’s no better feeling for us than seeing children uncover the potential of our technology; but the potential for what we can include in these packages is dependent on how much money we raise for them.

To donate please text LIFE26 £2 /£5 /£10 to 70070 now. e.g. LIFE26 £5

For more information about how you can get involved with Lifelites, please email Deri Jones djones@lifelites.org or call him on 0207 440 4200.

Tomorrow we’ll be showcasing All Dogs Matter so be sure to come and look at the great work it’s doing in the community. For more information about this week’s charities be sure to have a look here: www.bing.com/HelpYourBritain

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