Introduction to Lifelites Magical Technology



Welcome to our introduction to Lifelites Magical Technology. In this course you are going to learn about what Lifelites is and does and the benefits and positive outcomes that are possible using the magical technology we provide to children and young people in hospices across the British Isles. Please note that this course is designed to introduce you to Lifelites and the equipment we provide, but is not intended to replace face to face equipment training days; we would strongly recommend you attend an equipment training day to really get the most from your Lifelites Magical Technology.

What is Lifelites?

What is Lifelites?

Lifelites is a charity that donates and maintains packages of assistive technology for the 10,000 life-limited and disabled children using every children’s hospice service across the British Isles. This technology gives them opportunities that they might not otherwise have to play, be creative, control something for themselves and communicate for as long as it is possible.

  • Lifelites currently supports children and young people at 60 children’s hospice services across the British Isles.
  • As well as donating technology, Lifelites provides training for hospice staff and technical support completely free of charge. This ensures that the staff are getting the most out of the Lifelites technology for the children they care for.
  • Lifelites aims to replace existing technology packages every four years. The average cost of technology, training and technical support over the four year lifespan of a Lifelites package is around £50,000. 
  • The technology that Lifelites donates gives children in hospices the opportunity to escape the confines of their conditions and the chance to do things that many of us take for granted. They can tell their parents they love them, play a game with their brothers and sisters and stay involved in the world around them for as long as it is possible.

An introduction to Lifelites from our Patron Dame Esther Rantzen DBE

Test your Knowledge

Answer this question to test your knowledge so far:


What is Lifelites?

(pick the correct answer from the options below)

  • a manufacturer of assistive and inclusive technologies.
  • a charity that donates and maintains packages of assistive and inclusive technologies for children's and young people's hospice services across the British Isles.
  • a supplier that sells technology, maintenance and training services to hospices.

What equipment do we donate?

Lifelites aims to harness the power of technology by donating a wide variety of specialist assistive and inclusive equipment to enhance the lives of life-limited and disabled children using hospice services.  We focus on providing mobile assistive technologies with peripheral adaptations (such as switches, eyetrackers etc),  and specialist software that transforms everyday tech into inclusive and assistive tech for all abilities and conditions.

Through our application and consultation process we work hard to ensure we provide a customised package of equipment to suit the needs and requirements of each individual hospice service and their service users. The next part of the training will introduce some of the equipment we typically provide and the benefits and positive outcomes that can be achieved.

Creating a magical multisensory environment

To infinity and beyond...

The Mobile Magic Carpet is a mobile interactive projection system that can be used with a wide range of ages and abilities to provide fun, stimulation, relaxation, distraction and a range of one to one and group activities. Its light compact design means it is easy to move around the building and take sensory play to any room. Its height adjustable arm allows projection onto the floor, a table, or a bed or a wheelchair tray, whatever will suit the user or the activity.

There is an enormous range of activities and games on the magic carpet, including the option to customise and create your own activities. This provides unlimited possibilities from going into space to playing in the sea, forest or snow.

We have also provided portable sensory trollies that make sensory room favourites such as bubble tubes, fibre optic lights, projectors, music players and aromatherapy lamps portable and easy to move into bedrooms, lounges or wherever suits the user.

Sensory equipment can provide relaxation and positive stimulation for all users, but is particularly important for those with profound and multiple learning difficulties as a primary source of stimulation and communication.

A whole new world

A whole new world...

Recently we have donated Virtual Reality (VR) systems to some hospices, that provide fully immersive experiences and games for children and young people over the age of 12. This cutting edge technology transports users to other worlds and countries, enabling experiences that range from stimulating and fun to relaxing and liberating. VR delivers amazing, emotional and incredible experiences and can be used as a distraction from pain and even fulfill end of life wishes.

Play, communication and control for all

Play, communication and control for all

The Lifelites equipment allows all children and young people, regardless of their condition or ability, to have the opportunity to play, communicate, be creative and control something for themselves. 

At the touch of a button...

Switches (like the green one pictured here) give control and independence to any child that can press the switch and be taught to understand cause and effect. Using the Lifelites switches children can play games, make up stories, join in with cooking activities, turn on their lamps or fans, express an opinion or make a choice. 

...or in the blink of an eye

Eyegaze is a fantastic and powerful tool that brings the same opportunities to users that have no movement or control other than their eyes. The adjustable stand means the eyegaze system can be used wherever the user is most comfortable, be it in bed or sitting in a chair. The fabulous range of software, provides users with tools to be creative, communicate, play games, and to access the same tech, websites and applications that their peers and family use.

The latest eyegaze trackers and software have moved on a lot from their earlier counterparts and are increasingly easy to set up and use and incredibly responsive to all different abilities and conditions.

Magical musical moments

Magical musical moments with Lifelites


Music is a key and important experience and activity for children, particularly for those with PMLD (profound and multiple learning difficulties), for whom musical activities can serve as a gateway for interaction and communication.


Lifelites provides a number of different pieces of equipment, both software and hardware that allow all children, regardless of their condition or ability to take part in musical activities, and experience the many benefits that music therapy and music making can bring. For more information on music making technology we provide see our guide here.

Making memories

Making and capturing memories

We know that a key objective for hospice services is organising fun and special experiences to create happy memories that the whole family can cherish. In addition to the fun and interactive experiences the Lifelites equipment creates itself, we also often provide cameras, video equipment, iPads and other recording equipment that enables those experiences to be captured and replayed.

Test your knowledge

Answer the question below to test your knowledge.

Who can benefit from using the Lifelites equipment donated to your hospice service?

  • children who are able to use technology independently at home.
  • only siblings and parents.
  • all children and young people regardless of their condition or ability.

Helping you become the experts

On-site training

We know that the equipment we provide can only be magical if hospice staff are confident and knowledgeable on how to to use it. That is why we offer both initial training on your premises when we donate new equipment and ongoing refresher training to refresh and update knowledge and to train new staff to your organisation. Whether you have 5 staff or 50 we will work with you to design and deliver training that suits your team and your environment. And the best bit - as well as being fun and interactive, it is all completely free of charge!

A wealth of resources and guides

In addition to face to face training, we also provide a whole range of additional training and learning resources and guides to help you get the most from your Lifelites equipment. Each site is provided with a red folder of printed guides and resources and the Lifelites website has a section dedicated to hospice staff that contains a library of resources, links, worksheets, training guides, videos etc. You can access the library by visiting http://www.lifelites.org/hospicestaff.

Troubleshooting and Technical Support

Free technical support

In addition to training, we also offer all our projects free technical support for their Lifelites equipment. So if any of your equipment is not working then please do contact Lifelites Technical Support and we will soon get everything back up and running.

You can contact Lifelites Technical Support by calling 07833 251 755 or email them at [email protected]

Troubleshooting common issues

Here are some quick fixes to some of the most common technical problems:

1. Batteries - if you find switches, keyboards or mice are not working properly it is probably due to them either being turned off (check for an on/off switch or button) or the batteries need changing.

2. Reboot - we install some special software on all Lifelites PC's called "deep freeze". This means that no changes can be made to the default set up of the machine and no programs (or viruses) can be permanently added or removed to the machine without a special administrator logging in. So if something goes wrong, always try restarting the machine so the default set up is reloaded.


Your Lifelites team - here to support you

The Lifelites team are here to help and support you, so do get in touch if you have any questions, need some assistance or would like to book some training. You can find all our contacts details on our website https://www.lifelites.org/get-in-touch/meet-the-team/

We will also send you our Hospice Staff E-news that comes out every other month which is packed full of useful information to help you get the most from your Lifelites equipment. You might also like to join our  hospice staff Facebook group  and share your thoughts, ideas, experiences and questions with the rest of the Lifelites hospice staff network.

Test your knowledge

Answer the following question to test your knowledge.

In addition to donating a package of magical technology, what else does Lifelites provide for children and young people's hospice services?

  • Ongoing maintenance and technical support
  • Initial training on the equipment donated
  • Ongoing refresher and advanced training
  • Paper and online training and learning resources
  • Regular e-newsletters and facebook group for hospice staff
  • All of the above!

Congrats!


Thanks for completing the course! I hope that this information will help you get the most out of the Lifelites technology donated to your organisation and enhance the lives and experiences of the children and young people in your care!

If you have some onsite training scheduled with us, we look forward to meeting you soon, or if you would like to book some training to learn how to use your Lifelites equipment, please complete the training booking form or get in touch by emailing: [email protected] or call 07766 727 671.