This leaflet has been compiled as a list of equipment and suppliers that members of HemiHelp have over the years found useful in living and dealing with hemiplegia. Please help us keep it up to date by letting us know of any changes to the details you find here, or if you discover a brilliant piece of equipment and think others should know about it.
Included here are aids for writing, dressing, washing and eating as well as a few miscellaneous suggestions all designed for people with either the use of one hand or limited use of both hands. At the back of the leaflet is an address directory for you to contact the suppliers directly.
Please note that you may not have to pay VAT when:
- buying certain items that are intended exclusively and specifically for the use of a disabled person, such as a wheelchair or adapted computer keyboard
- having a vehicle adapted to suit their condition, or leasing a Motability vehicle
- having building work done to adapt your home because of your child’s disability
Aids for Writing
Angled Desk Top
‘Write angle’ wedge of desk top at a 20 degree angle, also available with a non slip mat. Philip & Tacey Ltd
Angled desk top with magnetic top Posturite (UK) Ltd
Bookstand/clip board/Sloping board all in one.
Posture pack writing slope Back in action
Desk Clamp ‘Free hand’ desk clamp—assists with reading, writing and drawing Peta
‘Variomatic’ by Staedller Good for geometry. Available from all good stationers
‘Dexball’ holds pen, pencil or spoon in position Insight Medical Products
Triangular colouring and lead pencils, colouring pens and markers and triangular ink pens. You can purchase these from the HemiHelp website www.hemihelp.org.uk/support_us/shop
Computer keyboard designed for use with one hand. PCD Maltron
A4 paper can be secured to a metal board using magnets or slipped between pages of an exercise book (These boards have sharp edges and therefore should be bound or framed before they are given to children). NES Arnold
Rulers and Geometry Sets
‘Discovery’ & ‘Achiever’ by Helix. These are good math’s sets, which can have magnetic strips stuck on the back for use with or without a metal/magnetic board. Available from all good stationers.
Rulers and protractors with handles
Ruler Cutter and Mat
Operates along the same lines as a traditional guillotine Brookvine Home Shopping
Easi grip scissors Homecraft
Long reach sponge
Plyfoam sponge on an extra long handle Homecraft
Nail Clipper Board Securely attached to a plastic base on suckers to provide stability whilst clipping. Promedics
Plaster cast cover
Waterproof protectors that slip over casts and splints to protect them when taking a bath or shower. Help at Home
Aids For Eating
Dycem & Stay in place Mats
Non-slip mats in a variety of shapes and sizes, also available on a reel for table tops etc. Homecraft, and Benefits Now, Ikea (branches nationwide). You can also purchase these from the HemiHelp website www.hemihelp.org.uk/support_us/shop
Fork with an extra wide prong which is sharpened to enable it to be used for cutting – both left and right handed available. Nottingham Rehab
Plastic version of The Knork - knife, fork, spoon in one. Can be purchased from Amazon (below) or individually from some camping shops and home stores www.amazon.co.uk/Light-My-Fire-Spork-Spoon/dp/B0013L2FGW
Electrical Tin Opener
Light & comfortable mains operated opener. Homecraft
Free Hand tray
Grater & Peeler Boards
Frame with detachable blade and optional spike to hold veg in place. Homecraft
This is a two-in-one knife & fork enabling you to eat with one hand. You can purchase these from the HemiHelp website www.hemihelp.org.uk/support_us/shop
Mini jug kettle
Ideal for boiling small quantities, this kettle is light and easy to lift. Homecraft
Guard which snaps on the side of any plate between 23-28cm, to push the food against so that it falls back onto the spoon. Homecraft
Rationell interior fitting drawer mat
Stay in place matting Ikea (branches Nationwide)
Safety cooking basket & strainer
Mesh wire basket avoids the need to lift heavy saucepans Homecraft
No fussy strings or ties this apron simply snaps on round the waist. Help at Home
Twist & Turn Jar Opener
Aids To Dressing
Elastic & Curly shoelaces (CoilersTM)
Grey school trousers
Elasticated waist boys’ school trousers up to men’s sizes. Kevins School Oufitters
Hook and Eye fitting
John Lewis (Nationwide)
Cotswold Cots make beds to order.
Holds a “hand” of cards in a curved shape. Lakeland
For finger and hand exercise, easy to handle non-oily putty Homecraft
Microwave Wheat Hot Water Bottle
All standard needles can be threaded on this simple plastic device. Homecraft
Twiddler hand exerciser
Chromed metal spring for exercising fingers and hands by stretching and squashing. Homecraft
Ace Centre Advisory Trust (Aiding Communication in Education) Tel: 01865 759800 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.ace-centre.org.uk Assessment, advice and information for young people in education who have communication difficulties. Good Leaflets.
Anything Left-Handed Ltd Tel: 0845 8723 272 Email: email@example.com Website: www.anythinglefthanded.co.uk (includes online shop). Specialist mail order company which provides properly designed, fully left handed versions of everyday items such as scissors, pens, cameras and kitchen utensils.
Back in action Website: www.backinaction.co.uk Search under posture – From £20 for posture pack. Complete pack includes seating wedge, writing slope and storage case.
Beesneez Website: www.beesneez.co.uk
Benefits Now Tel: 01983 529590 Website: www.benefitsnowshop.co.uk
BIME (Bath Institute of Medical Engineering) Tel: 01225 824103 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.bath.ac.uk/bime/ Registered charity carrying out design and development in medical and rehabilitation engineering. Works with both users and medical professionals. Informative website.
Brainstore Tel/Fax: 01376 501000 Website: www.brainstore.co.uk Products aimed at ages 8-16 to improve learning performance.
Children Today Tel: 01244 335 622 Email: email@example.com Website: www.children-today.org.uk The provision of equipment and aids for helping children and young people to overcome their difficulties.
Cotswold Cots Tel: 01993 842 885 Website: www.cotswoldcots.co.uk Will make beds to order for those with special needs.
Disabled Living Foundation Tel: 020 7289 6111 Helpline: 0845 130 9177 (10am-4pm Mon-Fri) Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.dlf.org.uk Huge amount of information about useful gadgets, plus an equipment centre.
FledglingsTel: 0845 458 1124 Email: email@example.com Website: www.fledglings.org.uk A brilliant charitable search and supply service, particularly for unusual items designed for children with special needs. Also, the cheapest supplier of coilers shoe laces we have come across.
Helix Tel: 013844 24441 Website: www.helix.co.uk Helix is a major distributor of education , home and office products throughout the world.
In-Car Safety Centre Tel: 01908 220 909 Fax: 01908 317 536 Website: www.incarsafetycentre.co.uk/ Children’s car seats etc.
Lakeland Ltd Tel: 01539 488100 Website: www.lakeland.co.uk
Lodgesons Tel: 0870 013 2420 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.lodgesons.co.uk Gadgets for the disabled driver, such as infra red controls, bleeper systems and steering balls. Manufacture all kinds of scissors, including push down scissors and those for left-handers. Manual available, ‘Developing Scissors Skills’, produced by paediatric occupational therapists.
MERU (Medical Engineering Resource Unit) Tel: 01372 725 203 Email: email@example.com Website: www.meru.org.uk MERU design and manufacture bespoke equipment and devices to meet the needs of disabled children where there is no commercially available alternative.
NES Arnold Ltd Tel: 0845 120 4525 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.nesarnold.co.uk/default.aspx Catalogue of educational products for Early Years, Primary and Secondary children. Includes Special Needs products.
Nottingham Rehab Supplies/Ways and Means Tel: 0845 121 8111 Email: email@example.com Website: www.nrs-uk.co.uk Enormous catalogue of products for the home, educational toys, hobbies and haberdashery.
PCD Maltron Ltd Tel: 0845 230 3265 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.maltron.com Computer keyboard designed for touch typing with one hand. Requires good dexterity and uses non-QWERTY layout (instructions and exercises supplied).
Posturite UK Ltd Tel: 0845 345 0010 Email: email@example.com Website: www.posturite.co.uk/PosturiteSite/pages/home/default.asp Producers of the desk top sloping boards, with a magnetic facility for holding paper in place.
Steps—Special Toys Educational Postal Service Tel: 01803 214124 Website: www.stepscharity.org Adapted toys which can be borrowed on long term loan.
Whizz Kidz Tel: 020 7233 6600 Website: www.whizz-kidz.org.uk Provides support for disabled people in leading a more independent life.