Technology has come a long way in helping people with mobility issues perform everyday tasks with greater ease. Recently, a mother came up with a novel idea for a device to help her wheelchair-bound son, born with cerebral palsy, to be able to explore the world on two feet – just like other children.
As a result, Debby Elnatan’s invention is now helping countless, wheelchair-bound children stand and walk along with their parents.
The Firefly UpSee Harness
Elnatan’s Firefly UpSee is a harness that attaches to parents by a series of straps, with the child’s feet fastened into rubber shoes. Using the harness, children are able to stand upright and move, step-for-step as their parent walks.
Taking Inspiration From A Child
Elnatan’s inspiration for the Firefly UpSee stemmed from her own personal experiences with her now 19-year-old son, Rotem. Born with cerebral palsy, Rotem was unable to use his legs, and doctors warned against Rotem being encouraged to walk or crawl for fear of exacerbating his symptoms.
This only made Elnatan more determined than ever to have her son experience the sensation of walking. So, against the doctors’ orders, Elnatan began crafting and refining a device that would allow Rotem to walk with her.
Since she first had the idea, Elnatan has worked tirelessly to bring her invention to light to help other parents, and on April 7, 2014, the Firefly UpSee was posted online for sale by Leckey, a Northern Ireland.
For $540, parents of children ages 3 to 8 can use the harness to help them walk, despite their physical limitations/mobility issues.
Parents are cautioned to consult with their child’s doctors before using Firefly UpSee. However, there is much optimism around the Firefly UpSee as several families have already begun using the harness. Read more about Elnatan’s invention in the source link below.
[source: NY Daily News]