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I GIVE A HAND: Big and small stories of those who are able to play, ride bikes and swim–thanks to our aids

Michela Bogliolo, Elena Parodi, James Segre.

In recent months, IO DO UNA MANO‘s activity has been very intense.

IO DO UNA MANO is the nonprofit association that aims to help people, especially children, with congenital or acquired differences in the upper limbs, by modeling, 3D printing and distributing customized aids free of charge.

We are getting requests for aids for sports, for everyday life, playful aids, some simple and some complex. Behind each aid is the story of a boy, a girl, and their family. Stories that tell us how it would be good to be able to play with everyone, to be able to play sports with their friends (riding a bike is one of the biggest requests) or even to be able to push a shopping cart more comfortably.

Annebel is a Haitian girl, lacking all four fingers, having only her thumb; she is determined, dynamic, and sporty, and from the very beginning she was very clear about the features she wanted for her aid. Model, color and customization followed her needs and taste. The aid is simple, has the four fingers, in black and white, with personalization only with her name. We met with her several times to improve the aid having tried it directly with her.



In December 2022 we delivered an aid to Giulia, an adult girl, to play the guitar. Giulia is a singer, but she had difficulty playing instruments because her arm is up to her elbow,  where now the aid connects.



In February 2023 we prepared and delivered the aid for playing guitar to a little girl, Giorgia, who loves music and everyone in the family is a music lover. The aid connects to her wrist with a plectrum, and Giorgia can play, as you can see in the video on the IO DO UNA MANO Facebook page:



The guitar aids were made by IO DO UNA MANO on the inspiration of an aid from e-nable, the international organization that makes aids all over the world, and which was designed to use cutlery: we revisited it and modified it to connect the plectrum to it.

We prepared for little Ettore an aid with its own box, prepared by Davide Canepa of Scuola di Robotica. His aid is inspired by Spiderman, with designs of the spider and webs on the back and wrist. Hector has welcomed the aid as a game, he enjoys it, and this is important because it means he has accepted it.

We are working on a bicycle aid for a child, and we are in touch with all the people to whom we have given the aids, some of whom will come to visit us in Genoa, including to visit the aids workshop at Madlab 2.0

We get recalls of aids through the Facebook page and a word-of-mouth on social media, and also through the associations we collaborate with, Raggiungere and AISP.

Those who are interested in learning more about the use and technology of our aids can read the paper we presented at I-RIM, the Institute of Robotics and Intelligent Machines, which you can find attached below, along with its poster: 3D functional sport prostheses, by Michela Bogliolo, Lea Turolla, Maura Casadio, James Segre and Elena Parodi.

For information:

Paper Protesi I-RIM 2022 – 3D functional sport prostheses – final


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