IATP opens new doors to enhanced demonstration center, reuse collection, and accessibility trainings in deluxe new facility
Illinois Assistive Technology Program in the former Vibra Hospital
701 N. Walnut, Springfield, Illinois
Everything about the Illinois Assistive Technology Program’s new home is an upgrade. The public rooms, 3-D Maker Space, Smart Home display rooms, Tech Kitchen, and even the increased availability of parking have taken accessibility for persons with disabilities and health conditions to an amazing new level at the IATP.
INCIL and SILC enjoyed an inside look last month with Demonstration Center Coordinator Robin Richard. She showed us a vast collection of “lower tech” items, such as magnifiers with lights; recreation items, and more specialized designs in the demonstration center and lending library where consumers of all ages can “try before they buy.”
Demonstration areas include vision, daily living, communication, hearing, mobility, toys, sensory helps, computer access, and more. The 3-D Maker Space creates and fabricates items not otherwise available to meet a consumer’s needs.
We were all dazzled by the new five-room Smart Home set up like a real house. The living room, kitchen, laundry room, bedroom, and sensory break room all featured the latest in accessible technology for all ages and a wide range of needs.
In the commercial teaching kitchen, consumers will learn techniques and approaches from a chef instructor and occupational therapist trained in adaptable methods and nutritious menus. The goal, says Chief Operating Officer Jacqueline Pitchford, is to “help consumers become more participatory in planning and cooking their own meals.”
The Reutilization collection contains items, such as durable medical equipment, that have been donated and can be passed along quickly for short- and long-term loans. The key here is “quickly,” for consumers who may not have access to equipment and devices they need. “Reuse is one of our most utilized programs. We have so much room here, and we’re excited for the opportunity to serve more customers,” says Pitchford.
These programs and features are designed to promote independence in living environments.
The best way to see the new 50,000-square-foot facility in the former Vibra Hospital is to visit. IATP will host its first Open House in the new building on April 19th from 2 to 7 p.m.
If that date isn’t convenient, IATP is happy to schedule a tour. And the website (iltech.org) offers comprehensive lists, descriptions, details of the consumer installment loan program, and more. See more great photos at https://iltech.org/how-we-help/see-a-device/
Note, too, that all of this is in addition to the wide-ranging services, advocacy, visits, evaluations, work assistance, fast track, home modifications recommendations, and so much more that IATP works on daily. For more information, visit www.iltech.org, or phone (217) 522-7985, (800) 852-5110 Illinois only.
Our thanks to Robin, Jackie, and the IATP team!