Craig Chaytor, has created a virtual reality technology for children and young people who may not normally be able to access events and venues, or may struggle with large crowds. He has called it I.M.M.E (Imagine Making Memories Everywhere). His inspiration is his daughter, Imogen who has Williams syndrome and has been supported by KIDS in Hull.

“Imogen showed signs of high anxiety when using V.R. (virtual reality) and I realised there was nothing built for a child who has a disability, to watch and enjoy V.R. So I decided to create sensory educational adventures for Imogen to use and learn.

To my amazement it started changing Imogen’s development skills as she was learning so much from my project. Imogen’s school contacted my wife and I to discuss how her development levels have suddenly changed. I told them about my creation and suggested I try it on a selection of students who have different needs to Imogen. The results were amazing to see teachers started getting emotional, thus I.M.M.E was born.

Moving forward from that I adjusted, learnt more and created the world’s first sensory V.R. book that is accessible to children with all needs. It will become an adventure story book so while reading a story from the book you take your phone out, and on that page you scan the special code and your phone turns into that page in virtual reality giving that child a front row seat to so many adventures to learn from. It has a powerful impact of teaching children and providing life changing benefits that they might not be capable of seeing or experiencing themselves in life. It has had an impact on children from ages 3 to 16 plus all with complex needs.

The media became interested in I.M.M.E and in September last year the Design Council made a short film about how I am designing a better life for a child which went viral. The BBC also did a story cover and it went viral. After all the great feedback and impact my story had on so many families worldwide,  they all asked one question: ''when is it available to help their children.''

So I am turning my project into a business and have attracted some big names but the one thing my investors have asked to be considered for investment is a user panel. A group or organisation to parents that will be part of my user panel to test I.M.M.E. I need to gain a high volume for the user panel to show them there is an interest in the market even though I got great numbers through the media, having it on paper is what they want to see.”

How you can help

To help Craig to get to the next stage in his investment journey, you can take part in the survey needed for the user panel for I.M.M.E.

Find out more about I.M.M.E