This is My Child: The Trabasack Story
Mumsnet has launched a timely and important campaign which we felt we needed to get involved with. In their own words:
This Is My Child is a myth-busting and awareness-raising campaign, launched in response to requests from our members and supported by input from some of the leading charities in the field.
This is My Child wants to support the parents of children living with additional needs and start conversation about living and coping with children with disabilities of all kinds. It’s a well-known fact that our product was launched and inspired by the parents of a child with additional needs and this campaign applies to us as many thousands of others out there.
Trabasack Inspiration: Joe
Behind the scenes at Trabasack and inspiring the invention in the first place is Joe. Joe is the son of Trabasack founders Clare and
Duncan Edwards and lives with the epileptic condition Dravet Syndrome and a SCN1a deletion which is linked to the condition. Joe received his diagnosis aged just four.
Dravet Syndrome life limiting, genetic condition that causes severe epilepsy, learning disability and global developmental delay in childhood. The seizures are usually hard to treat and do not respond well to epileptic drugs. You read more about the condition here.
Dravet Syndrome means Joe is non-verbal and needs support in most daily tasks and the condition is not one well-known across the UK and even the world. The Trabasack team always make the effort to attend the National Dravet Conference to find out more about developments in research and treatment for the condition.
Joe is a wheelchair user and through the determination of his parents, he is happy and content and always learning and experiencing new sensory things. This is helped through the use of his Trabasack, invented by his mum to make accessing toys, games and multimedia much easier.
The Invention of Trabasack
Living with Dravet Syndrome means Joe has always had seizures and traditional buggy and wheelchair tray designs proved dangerous in the early days. Bulky and hard to remove his parents worried about him hurting himself when seizing when the tray was in place. His mum Clare then began creating.
The original design was simply a soft bean bag cushion with a tray on top so Joe could easily access his toys and games. The original design was a complete success but then the problem came of sticking things to the tray. Initially Velcro tape was used but this got dirty and messy quickly so the Trabasack team once again got their heads together and found a material which was Velcro receptive without getting filthy.
The tray developed its curved shape to fit to Joe’s body and it meant his arms could sit comfortably on top of the tray when using the toys and games. This product idea was honed and refined to create the Trabasack Curve – a product which hundreds of people living with disabilities around the world rely on.
The Trabasack can be used for many purposes, as a mount for media devices, a platform for communicative switches and simply as a handy writing surface when you’re out and about. We’re fiercely proud of our product and are pleased it’s helpful for so many people around the world and are equally proud of the boy who inspired it!
Visit other stories below:
We’re happy to share our support for the This Is My Child Campaign and would love to hear your stories too.
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