When she became a mother for the fourth time, UK-based Carline Deal thought she wouldn’t be surprised by her youngest son. However, she learned a whole new set of parenting styles to adapt to her now nine-year-old son who was diagnosed with autism.
In order to help him with developing his motor skills required to be self-dependent to accomplish tasks like putting on clothes and tying shoelaces, she started activity with him involving a hatbox. She started modifying this box in many ways to capture her son’s attention. Over the years, she even thought of including technological tools including one that could track his development. This was how Kit & Caboodle was born. Essentially, it is a tool for neurodiverse kids to develop and improve upper limb motor skills.
Carline took the help of many design engineers, software developers, and manufacturers to include all the features she envisioned this magic box having. It also made her realize that the tool would be beneficial for neurodiverse kids with conditions like autism and dyspraxia among others.
She also discussed her work with healthcare professionals from the NHS who told her it could help people with impaired hand mobility like an accident or stroke survivors, and even people with degenerative diseases like Parkinson’s disease. In early 2020, she collaborated with the University of Wales and NGO Cerebra for a pilot project. Carline is now putting the finishing touches on the product based on the feedback from the pilot project and is actively seeking investment to mass-produce Kit & Caboodle.