YetiCare activates in Autism Foundation Finland
YetiCare activates clients and enables natural group formation in the activity centre
Young people with autism spectrum disorder face many challenges in their daily lives. They perceive many social behavioural situations and dislocations to be difficult. When it was decided to introduce YetiCare in the foundation’s activity centre, it was intended to support and manage customers’ daily activities and transitions, exercise everyday skills, and support group formation.
Towards the end of 2018, YetiTablet was brought to test use at one of the activity centres of Espoo’s Guidance and Coaching services. The centre’s clients are young people with autism spectrum disorder, some of whom also have physical disabilities. These young clients face particular challenges in social behavioural situations, dislocation situations and daily life. YetiCare’s mission was to support young people in meeting these challenges and improving the creation of social relationships.
The tablet was used with individuals and groups with promising results. In general, Yetitablet raised interest with everyone around it and everyone was keen to take part. The Activity centre had previously used small tablets, but there is a significant difference in the impact of a giant tablet on natural group formation: a small tablet does not encourage co-working or cooperation between users because everyone has their focus. The YetiTablet’s impact is strong and almost automatic; it encourages people to work together and also guides others to join. It also attracts users of different ages to work in harmony.
Intuitive and Versatile use
The activity areas which YetiTablet can support are almost limitless. For the foundation’s Guidance and Coaching services, the applications for the tablet were selected to support the requirements of coaches and instructors, who got a brief introduction.
Staff used the YetiTablet in the mornings for activity planning and the presentation of the daily schedules. The giant tablet allows coaches to present the day’s agenda and client-specific content. With screen sharing, it is possible to develop time management skills in a controlled way when doing different activities. When the client constantly sees the passage of time, it helps deal with dislocation situations.
The YetiTablet with open Android provides a wide spectrum of application content. Several different types of applications were used by coaches. A cooking program, Toca Kitchen, was used in the centre to guide action, promote independence, and practice everyday life skills. In turn, group formation and interaction skills were rehearsed with “pet hotel.” The game-like application was paced nicely and contributed strongly to social interaction. My Talking Tom application was used for communicating and speaking rehearsals, and the exercises were regularly repeated by the clients without getting bored.
Although the pilot demonstrated that one of the strengths of the YetiTablet is in natural group formation and enablement of interactive activities, it also showed that it is easy for individuals to use without the help of a coach or instructor. This was a benefit in the afternoons when the instructors were not available all the time. The YetiTablet was available to clients, offering relaxing alternative activities supported by various applications and services.
The goal is early support and diagnostics
Mr. Vesa Korhonen, Director of Corporate Relations has summed up the service needs of people with autism spectrum disorder. In the future, the importance of early support and interactive methods will be even more emphasised. The foundation aims to prevent loneliness, support possibilities for independent living and work life of their clients and increase human relationships. These objectives were set also as the objectives for YetiCare’s pilot use.
YetiTablet supports the goals mentioned above. The wide spectrum of applications can meet the specific requirements of users in different situations and use cases. The versatility of the YetiTablet makes the work of coaches easier and more effective, releasing more time for actually serving clients. For the users, a giant tablet has a strong activation effect. The easy-to-use and open environment awakens the desire to try something new. In the pilot, it was discovered that the superior visual presentation capability of the YetiTablet and its applications effectively attracted interest and sensory activity.
Autism Foundation Finland
Autism Foundation Finland (Autismisäätiö) is a non-profit, national foundation and social enterprise in Finland. The activities of the foundation consist of various housing, work and daycare activities, guidance and coaching, health care services, and research and development services. The Foundation has offices throughout Finland in Espoo, Helsinki, Kotka, Seinäjoki, Tampere and Vantaa.