North Central News

Children tell their story at Ryan House

Ryan House has unveiled a new “Story of Me” Room to provide opportunities for families to document the story of their child’s life prior to their passing.

Using a tablet purchased through a $100,000 grant from the Humana Foundation, a child receiving care at Ryan House can capture and document the stories of their lives, something that will last a lifetime for the families who care for them (submitted photo).

Using a tablet purchased through a $100,000 grant from the Humana Foundation, a child receiving care at Ryan House can capture and document the stories of their lives, something that will last a lifetime for the families who care for them (submitted photo).

The “Story of Me Room,” made possible through a $100,000 grant from the Humana Foundation, provides a state-of-the-art multimedia experience that will allow Ryan House children to capture memories and promote healthy communications between their entire family. Whether the child utilizes Ryan House services for respite care (short-term, overnight breaks) or end-of-life care, the room will help capture the child’s journey—from diagnosis to present day—through the use of multimedia technologies and therapeutic play.

“The kids we serve are not expected to live through early adulthood,” said Julie Bank, Ryan House executive director. “The technology in the Ryan House Studio will capture and document the stories of their lives and it’s those memories that will last a lifetime for the families who care for them.

“The thought of a child being able to use the room to record final messages for their families before they pass away, or even the opportunity to document their stay at Ryan House, takes legacy building to a whole new level,” she adds.

Video and audio journaling, Skypeing with family members in another state on a 90-inch television, creating videos, slideshows and memory books documenting their respite stays, are all now a possibility for the kids. They will also be able to use the equipment to simply have fun. GoPro cameras will allow them to videotape their experiences during their stay at the House.

The cameras also have harnesses that will allow the Care Team to strap a camera to a wheelchair for kids who have limited mobility. Green screen technology will allow them to make fun videos and simulate experiences that they might not otherwise experience.

Every family that comes to Ryan House for respite or end-of-life care will receive a special folder where videos, photos and the various tech creations will be stored for them.

Ryan House, a 501c3 nonprofit that was established in 2004, is located near Central Avenue and Thomas Road. The Ryan House facility opened in spring 2010. For more information, visit www.ryanhouse.org.

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