Dreams Come True

The freedom to dream big is not something all of us have the luxury of

The power of having a dream

Dreams transform lives. It is not always clear how, but they do. When someone’s life is transformed, they are no longer the person they used to be. They can do new things, scale new heights, reach new horizons. At Dreams Come True we support children and young adults with serious and life-limiting conditions on a day-to-day basis. Our mission is simply to bring them joy by helping them achieve their dreams.

To most of us a dream is a subconscious alternative to reality, with all its attendant benefits and characteristics, but it can also be about aspiration. Dreams push entrepreneurs to action, lead athletes to medals, and give people purpose and hope. Dreams are the foundations of fulfilling your potential.

At Dreams Come True, dreams give children and young people the chance to step outside the physical and psychological constraints of a serious, life-limiting condition or - more importantly - leave them behind. A dream is unique to every individual: it can be a once-in-a-lifetime trip, a chance to meet an idol or, as we are finding at Dreams Come True, an increasing desire for much-needed assistive technology. In either event a dream can be an essential part of fulfilling our potential, gaining a sense of attainment and building purpose in our lives and work.

The freedom to dream big is not something all of us have the luxury of

Most of us in the UK do not suffer from a lack of empowerment; we are rarely stigmatised, isolated or dependent. We can enjoy social lives, plan careers, build businesses and work with relative freedom and reasonable choice. Most of us are able to dream big, helping us reach our aspirations, yet these everyday freedoms are precious.

For children with serious and life-limiting conditions, everyday life can sometimes seem like an additional burden of their situation. Dream fulfilment can offer the opportunity to remove some of that weight and restore normality for the child and their family. The effects are far from temporary, bringing lasting and often life-changing benefits. A dream is unique to the individual, but at Dreams Come True, we are finding that assistive technology dreams are increasing.

Evidence that dreams have a positive impact on lives

Despite plenty of anecdotal evidence, the impact of dream fulfilment on children and their families has not been fully researched. Dreams Come True is one of the few charities doing essential work in this area.

Dream experiences present opportunities for people to achieve, learn, grow and accomplish in some way. Dreams are also ways in which children’s lives can be enriched in a way most appropriate to the child and their condition. Dr Jayne Galinsky, University of Stirling, Power of Dreams Study.

How technology is transforming the lives of young people with serious and life-limiting conditions

Technology is rapidly changing the world we live in and the lives we lead. Everything from how we shop, communicate, travel, exercise and socialise is being disrupted. The digital world is helping businesses and entrepreneurs innovate and connect.

Perhaps more importantly, assistive technologies-- such as sensory equipment and tablets-- are empowering, informing, and promoting greater inclusion, equality and accessibility for people with serious and life-limiting conditions. The impact on lives is transformative.

Assistive Technology Dream stories

Grace

Nine-year-old Grace from Birmingham has severe and profound learning difficulties. She can’t communicate easily and so her mum, Emma, wrote to Dreams Come True on her behalf to explain Grace’s dream:

Grace recently spent four weeks in hospital and she absolutely loved the sensory equipment. She would love to have her very own bubble tube, fibre optic lights, cushion and projector. It would give Grace a place to go and be calm. She is in chronic pain a lot throughout the day and it would help her to relax.

With support from Dreams Come True, Grace’s parents were able to answer her call for help. They spent two months getting her room ready and when it was complete the whole family was delighted:

We’ve finally completed Grace’s bedroom and she now has everything up and running. The photo above shows the joy of seeing the projector for the first time. It’s made such a difference, I can’t thank you all enough!

If you would like to find out more about Grace's dream click here.

James

 James is another young person who lives with a severe neurological disorder and visual impairment, although these conditions do nothing to deter his creativity. James is an aspiring artist, creating amazing pieces using an innovative eye gaze system, which has enabled him to explore his creative side.

James‘s life has been transformed. The system enables him to control his computer by eye movements alone. After much practice and training, James is now empowered and able to complete complex pieces of artwork. He has set up his own bag design company with the proceeds going to support his school.

To be able to produce work independently has been life-changing for James, who is reliant on other people for so many aspects of his day-to-day life. The technology has revolutionised his world and given him choices and a positive focus through his art. James’ dream was to be able to display his artwork in a gallery and he was delighted when Greenwich Art Gallery agreed to host to an exhibition.

The exhibition has inspired the whole family. The gallery did a brilliant job mounting and displaying James’ eye-gaze art and James was just captivated seeing the gallery devoted to his work. The experience has given the whole family an aura of happiness and has enabled us to put aside some of the worries about the progression in his condition and celebrate instead his considerable achievement!

"At Dreams Come True we work hard to find new ways of working with business partners to support the thousands of children and families who need our help."

Richard Ashton, CEO, Dreams Come True.

If you would like to find out more about our dreams click here.

If you or your organisation want to help, please get in touch by calling +44(0)1428 726330 and asking for Chris Nutt in the Corporate Fundraising Team. You can also get in touch with the charity here.

 

 

 

 

 


Hannah Attenburrow
Date: 20/07/2017
Author: Hannah Attenburrow




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