Anonymous cash donation helps disabled three-year-old's dreams of communicating come true

Walsall | News | Published:

She's the little girl who desperately needed a special machine to help her communicate with her eyes.

And now Lillie-Grace Scott's dream has come true after an anonymous donor stumped up the final amount cash to buy it.

The three-year-old, of Willenhall, has just started to use the pioneering Eye Gaze machine thanks to an amazing response from readers after an appeal in the Express & Star.

Her parents Kim Windsor, 30, and Ben Scott, 33, of Barmouth Close, Short Heath, said the £7,000 equipment arrived shortly before Christmas and that the family and her speech and language therapist underwent training in how to use it.

Lillie with her parents: Kim and Ben

Miss Windsor said: "We had got just under half the money we needed with people giving us donations after seeing Lillie's story in the paper. The online fundraising website had £900 in it one day from someone from America, then when we checked it again someone else had put £3,800 in it and that was enough. We couldn't believe it.

"It was just amazing and we're so grateful to everyone for what they gave us. We had people calling round to our street looking for us to hand us money.

"She has been using the Eye Gaze now for two weeks and is just getting used to it. It really made Christmas for us and we can see the difference in her reactions already. She is usually uncomfortable around new people, but already we've noticed she is calmer now.

"She is just getting used to understanding that she can use her eyes to power it and that process will probably take about six months before she will move on to the communication elements of it."


Powered completely by her eyes, the computer will act as a communication device to allow her to talk, learn and play in much the same way as the gadget scientist Stephen Hawking has. And in the future the New Invention Nursery School pupil will be able to use it to do her school work and even use the internet.

The technology, made by Tobii, connects the user with a light that is shone from the screen into the user's eye. When that light bounces back from the user's eye it hits the screen directly where the user is looking, working in a similar way to a touch screen computer.

Her mother added: "The machine is completely powered by her eyes. It allows her to choose between pictures, such a food choices or activities. We are able to upload games and she has a choice of what to play. As she gets older we can also programme it to suit her level of education."

The family is continuing to fundraise for an 'Innowalk' machine, which will cost £11,000. So far the fund has reached £5,200 after an anonymous donation of £2,000.

The equipment will help improve Lillie's head control and reduce spasticity and pain in her legs. It also improves digestion, sleep patterns, breathing and heart rate.

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