DEMAND is a charity dedicated to helping people with disabilities that require bespoke equipment to help them with their everyday lives. DEMAND transforma the lives of people with disabilities – of all ages and with all types of disability.
DEMAND’s engineering and design expertise enables them to manufacture and refurbish equipment that helps people with disabilities. From two sites in the UK, their team of 20 staff modify, refurbish, design and manufacture equipment that makes the daily life of people with disabilities easier or helps them to enjoy sport and leisure activities. Those with special requirements frequently find there is no ‘off- the- shelf’ solution. The donations they receive enable them to dedicate the time necessary to design solutions specific to an individual and provide the equipment at no cost to the people it helps.
“The kitchen was a scene of devastation but it was great fun!” 17 year old Natasha was ABLE to cook in her kitchen for the first time thanks to a custom seat designed by DEMAND.
Cerebral Palsy means Natasha isn’t able to stand unaided so it’s not possible for her to stand at a kitchen counter to prepare food. Natasha and her family spent years testing different pieces of equipment. From a wheelchair Natasha would need to stretch up high to reach the counter and no stool offered enough support or stability.
Seemingly out of options, the family learnt about DEMAND, who can provide custom made equipment to augment and enhance the lives of people living with disabilities when no suitable solution can be found. From workshops in Hertfordshire and Yorkshire DEMAND designs, manufactures, or modifies existing equipment to suit an individual’s specific needs.
Natasha’s bespoke stool has a tilting seat that lets her perch half sitting, half standing which makes it easy to work comfortably at the worktop. Locking Castors mean she can move around the kitchen freely but apply the brakes when she needs to stay securely in one place. DEMAND’s designers produced prototypes of the seat to find the best seating position for Natasha to feel comfortable and secure. Natasha chose her favourite colour for the upholstery, which is of course wipe clean, and having received the finished product she could make her first recipe. “I’ve made a French pastry called a ‘mille-feuille’ – my favourite!”
With the custom stool Natasha can be more independent, and it has come just in time to help her practice for a GCSE Catering course starting this September.
Natasha’s stool was made possible with a donation from the DM Thomas foundation; “The chair is fantastic! I always used to be reliant on other people, It’s great that I am now much more confident and ABLE to use the kitchen on my own!”
Save a cake for us Natasha!
DM Thomas awarded £4,000 to DEMAND in 2014.