In 2023, we can see that there is no shortage of innovation in technology designed to increase accessibility and assistance, with new and exciting advancements made by tech companies every day. Technology can come in many forms as it relates to goals and objectives for Sunrise. For example, as it relates to programs and services, technology has become a critical part of participating in one’s community. Even in our day-to-day lives, many of us would feel lost without laptops, tablets, and smartphones. Giving access to devices, services, training, and innovative software can foster independence, enhance mobility, promote self-determination, and provide a voice to those that may not have one. With this approach, we hope to begin to focus on creating programs beyond arts, crafts, and horticulture and introduce staff and the people we support to innovative ideas of what a meaningful day activity looks like.
In the group homes and Intermediate Care Facilities (ICFs), we have already started to invest in technology. Devices such as Alexa have increasingly become a staple for people with disabilities because they can easily connect to communication devices and relay important information. While many think of Alexa as just a device that can tell you the weather or turn on/off the music, it has become so much more than that. Some of the people we serve use it as part of their morning routine, utilizing visuals through Echo Show to assist with activities of daily living. One item that we recently invested in at one of the ICFs was an adaptive equipment device called Obi, which using customizable accessibility switches, allows its user to be in control of what they eat and when. Watch a video of one of the people we support in the Cape Coral ICF using it below.