Robots And New Technology Keep Sick Kids In School, Thanks To Grahamtastic Connections [VIDEO]
Graham Morissette was a 6-year old kid diagnosed with leukemia in the late 1990's. He died in 1997 when he was 8 years old and since then, her mother Leslie founded the non-profit Grahamtastic Connection in his memory, providing free technological devices- and robots too- for kids battling cancer.
Leslie said that throughout Graham's treatment, they have been in and out of the hospital most of the time and that gave Graham a hard time coping up with school and doing things a normal kid does. She said that seeing his child battle with a serious illness is such a heart-breaking scene to look at, the CNN reports.
During Graham's diagnosis, the internet was a source of companion for him to be with family members and friends. That time, the internet was still in its infancy but still, the internet paved way for him to connect with people outside the hospital. Leslie said that Graham connected with everyone he comes across with from younger children to elderly patients.
When Graham died two years later, the Morissette's founded the Grahamtastic Connection which provides free technology with children of serious illnesses and kids battling with cancer. The organization has already helped 1,500 children thought the U.S. continue their education and stay connected to the outside world.
In an interview with the CNN, Leslie told Laura Klairmont that they have this advocacy because when their son was still alive, the computer helped him lead a "normal" life. It helped Graham heal emotionally and physically both at the same time, the Las Vegas Now reports.
Kids now have the chance to be so much more connected using new technology on social media. There are also robots which can walk down the halls of the child's school, can go to lunch with the child's friends and which could also do all the things a normal kid could do. The robot just needs to be plugged in and it can be operated from the cancer patient's home or hospital bed.
Laura said that this technology gives children the feeling of control when their world is measured by the things they do. This gives them hope, this helps them somehow taste how a normal life should be led.