Virtual Reality therapy for Metropolitan Youth Health

The Women’s & Children’s Hospital Foundation (WCH Foundation) is supporting the Chimera Legacy Foundation to land its donation of a Virtual Reality Pod into the Metropolitan Youth Centre (MYH) in Elizabeth to help youth tackling trauma.

We have helped bring a different outlook to the lives of Adelaide youth tackling trauma, with some Virtual Reality therapy, helping them to escape the stresses of life.

MYH is a trauma-responsive youth health service working within the Health and Recovery, Trauma Safety Services (HaRTSS) of the Women’s and Children’s Health Network in Metropolitan Adelaide.

Chimera Legacy Foundation works to embed Virtual Reality therapy into hospitals and treatment centres for healthcare needs and, with the support of the WCH Foundation, is breaking some new ground to help youth at MYH by donating a Virtual Reality pod.

Damien Thompson, a Leukaemia, Bone Marrow Transplant, Graft V Host Disease and Double Lung Transplant recipient, founded Chimera Legacy Foundation to be able to use his own experience of finding support in VR therapy to set out on a journey to provide VR therapy into the care sector.

Damien said his own experience with VR therapy when in hospital for long periods of time makes him certain the youth at the MYH now have an important tool to tackle the trauma they deal with.

“Coping with these stresses is difficult and usually met with medication. It wasn’t until I tried VR that I was able to manage the stress,’’ Damien said.

“Having a window to the world at your fingertips allowed me to escape anytime I felt stressed. It’s that mental reset we all need.’’

Chimera’s VR Pods already support young patients on their healthcare journey. Chimera works directly with healthcare providers to tailor and deliver VR therapies to assist patients during their treatments and this latest donation extends that technology into the field of trauma support for youth.

Virtual Reality Pod

MYH Social Worker, Sarina Cornforth, WCH Foundation Corporate & Community Fundraising Manager, Ansley Easterlin, and Chimera Legacy Foundation Founder, Damien Thompson.

Verity Gobbett, Head of Mission for WCH Foundation, said, “The WCH Foundation is delighted to be able to work with the Chimera Legacy Foundation to facilitate this innovative use of new technology to enhance the patient experience.”

“Knowing that Damien has had the lived experience of Virtual Reality helping him in his younger life overcome great challenges brings an even bigger sense of the value of this donation to those who will use it.”

“It is really exciting that the WCH Foundation is able to help Chimera Legacy Foundation bring their goals to fruition.”

Sharon Wight, Senior Manager for MYH, said, “MYH provides health care to vulnerable young people who have often experienced early life trauma. Coming into appointments can often feel scary and overwhelming, especially where they may be engaging in therapeutic care that can be unsettling.”

“The VR pods will be a part of a special trauma-responsive therapy/wellbeing space that will contribute to making their time at MYH welcoming, safe and engaging.”

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