Communication for Cameron

I've known Elaine since school and I met her beautiful boy Cameron through a summer club  I worked at.  I saw videos on Facebook of Cameron trialling the 'Eye Gaze' software and felt so dissappointed for Elaine and her family when they realised that although this was the key to unlocking Camerons hidden potential and independence that the cost was unachievable.  Elaine and her family give so much to so many.... especially since setting up Fab Little Fishes baby and toddler group.  I feel it's about time we try to give them a little support.  I have set up this page with Elaines permission and all money raised will go to Elaine to help fund the equipment and software needed.   I spoke to Elaine about Cameron and asked for a blurb about how this software and laptop would help him and this was what she said... Cameron is a bright, loving boy of 14 years old from Nairn in the Scottish Highlands. At only 7 months old he was diagnosed with Quadriplegic Cerebral Palsy. Cerebral Palsy is a physical condition that affects movement posture and co-ordination. Cameron is severely affected and requires constant one on one care and support with everything he does. Communication is a huge barrier for Cameron – he is unable to speak in such a way that (the vast majority of) people are able to understand him, and communication really is the key to Cameron’s future. Cameron started nursery at 2 years old, and progressed onto 2 years at preschool nursery. He then moved onto primary school where he was registered in the special needs department however he spent a lot of time with his peers in the main stream class room. It has been very clear from day one that Cameron takes everything in and is very bright, always showing enthusiasm and keen to learn. As Cameron is now in secondary school going into S3, the importance of his requirement to communicate efficiently and effectively is highlighted. Having pursued every route possible to no avail Speech and Language specialists have gone back to basics with Cameron using a system that is very time consuming and not possible for him to work on his own, preventing him from having any form of independence. We arranged for Cameron to have a private assessment with Graeme Innes – product specialist for Smart Box assistive technology. He advised that a communication system could be used that will be tailored to Cameron. The system would be accessed via eye movement, in simple terms it’s converting eye movement into cursor control. Cameron has a lot of sudden movement to no movement but can dwell, sustaining his gaze which is the key to this technology. Cameron is fighting with every other part of his body to sustain his gaze but has proven to us he can do that. Having this system would enable Cameron to do everything he needs to in school that any of the other child can do via a computer and mouse movements. Primarily this is a communication system however as a secondary use Cameron would be able to also control his bedroom; - the tv, lights, his audible account and Alexa. Out with that there is Youtube which he loves, and he could navigate Word and Excel and would be able to call friends and family – everything you would expect from an able-bodied child. His eyes are the one thing he has good control of, so we feel we need to really exploit this and give Cameron the power to communicate this way. Cameron is a phenomenal young man with the power to do so much more than his body allows. Due to his difficulty with communicating people therefore assume that Cameron doesn’t understand. He gets excluded from a lot of things that many take for granted as people think he can’t cope with certain situations. This upsets him as he wants to be included, to have friends to hang out with – and make arrangements with these friends. Cameron’s confidence would increase so much by being able to communicate with everyone and simply be heard. Please help us to fund the specialist equipment required to give Cameron a voice and the independence that he so deserves. Please remember to check our the 'Communication for Cameron' Facebook page which has been set up by Leighanne Bain to detail upcoming events and progress for this campaign.


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Organizer and beneficiary

Lacey MacDonald 
Nairn, Scotland, United Kingdom
Leighanne Bain 
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