Life-changing Acheeva Bed for WESC Foundation students

15 April 2021

WESC Foundation is so grateful to our wonderful supporters who have helped us to raise money to fund an Acheeva Bed. The Acheeva Bed positions students comfortably and safely whilst joining in classroom activities.

What is an Acheeva Bed?

The Acheeva Bed helps our most severely disabled children take an active part in lessons alongside their peers. The Acheeva is a specialist piece of equipment which provides positioning with full support to the child. It is compact and easily moveable within the classroom, meaning the child can be included in class activities. Adjusting the height and angle of the Acheeva allows children to make eye contact and to communicate at various levels. These adjustments mean that they can be level with classmates who may be in wheelchairs and see what is being shown to other learners.

Why do we need this equipment?

Children with profound physical disabilities are often unable to move themselves into different positions. To avoid pressure sores and to aid breathing and digestion they must be moved frequently. These children may be more comfortable lying flat rather than being upright in chairs. In a classroom setting this often means on the floor on cushions, so at different heights to classmates who may be better able to use chairs. This can lead to students feeling isolated and missing out on large parts of their education.

Fintan lying in Acheeva Bed wearing headphones
Image: Fintan lying in Acheeva Bed wearing headphones

Fintan’s Story

Fintan has a rare form of Battens Disease which is a terminal, neurodegenerative disorder. This affects vision, cognitive ability, speech and mobility. Being in his wheelchair for long periods of time can cause Fintan discomfort. Hoisting Fintan out of his chair allows him to stretch out regularly but can take precious time out of the classroom. On the Acheeva Bed, Fintan is able to relax comfortably in inclusive environments and partake in classroom and social activities in the same spaces as his friends, instead of being on his own in his bedroom during the school day and into the evenings.

The Acheeva helps staff to deliver learning to all our young people with complex needs, in a way that is tailored to their individual needs.

This important piece of equipment costs around £4500.

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