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Student-Designed Device Helps Kids Gain Independence

By Shaun Heasley | August 30, 2011

A group of college students is lending a hand to kids with physical disabilities by designing a special tray that allows those who use walkers to carry their belongings unassisted.

The tray can latch onto practically any walker enabling children to bring items from point A to point B while still having two hands to grip their mobility aid. The clear, acrylic device can lay flat to carry a child’s lunch, for example, or it can be positioned at an angle to hold an iPad or a book.

Originally, the idea for the tray came from a physical therapist at a Grand Rapids, Mich. school who wanted her students with cerebral palsy and other conditions to be able to focus on learning rather than logistics. She asked a local engineering professor to help out and soon his students at Grand Valley State University developed a working prototype, which they hope to eventually make available more widely.

Students who have already used the tray are finding that it allows them to be more independent since they don’t have to rely on an assistant to carry their belongings, reports The Grand Rapids (Mich.) Press. To read more click here.


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