CleverCogs System Continues to Make Advancements in People's Lives

Blackwood recently marked the one year anniversary of CleverCogs. The personalised digital care package has many care features, the benefits of which are evident. However, perhaps less obvious is the enormous impact CleverCogs can have on the user’s confidence and self-esteem. 

Annie Barr is a Blackwood tenant who has very successfully learned how to use CleverCogs. She found learning to use it fairly straightforward, with only a little bit of help needed. She feels it’s made a large difference to her quality of life, and is looking forward to accessing Netflix on the system. She would also like Amazon Prime Instant Video to be added as a feature. Annie uses CleverCogs several times a week, mostly for entertainment purposes – especially for watching films and listening to music. Documentaries about Scottish history are a particular favourite of hers.

CleverCogs has evidently sparked a new interest in IT for Annie, who previously had no experience of using computers. She has lately been inspired to learn more about technology thanks to CleverCogs, and has even enrolled for a computing course.  

Annie is yet another example of a Blackwood customer who has found great success with CleverCogs. It is easy to see that this system is genuinely life-changing and can bring a new focus into the lives of its users, who often struggle with limited mobility and can be stuck for things to do, especially if leaving the house is an issue. As one customer puts it: “[it has] given me a lift in life, something to concentrate on…”

“I think it’s a great thing” Penny Hall, sister of Blackwood resident Mandy McKenzie, says, “I think [Mandy] is a lot happier”. Penny has been using CleverCogs to communicate with her sister for around six months, since the beginning of the year. She uses it once or twice a week and prefers it to other methods. She pays her sister fortnightly visits, and works as an out-of-school club assistant & babysitter and is shortly returning to college.

When asked what changes she had noticed in her sister since using CleverCogs, Penny noted that Mandy has since become “more chatty”, is well entertained as her favourite music, movies & games has been uploaded onto the system by Shawn More, Blackwood’s Digital Skills Trainer, and has become enough of an expert to tell Penny and other family & friends how to use the technology. Penny believes the technology is “absolutely super” and Mandy has been given a huge “boost” in self-esteem through learning how to use CleverCogs. She notes it is useful for Mandy to have the technology “at her fingertips”. Penny spoke about the benefits of Mandy being able to speak to the whole family at once through the CleverCogs system, and notes: “Mandy’s in control, she’s telling me what to do…it’s given her self-esteem a boost.” She also mentions that the CleverCogs system decreased the communication barrier between her and her sister: “Sometimes it’s easier to understand her because you get the hand signals too. If you’re on the phone it can be a bit frustrating because you’re guessing what she’s saying sometimes.”

It is a hugely fulfilling experience for staff at Blackwood to see how CleverCogs enriches the lives of both our customers and their loved ones. As Blackwood and its partners further develop CleverCogs and what it can offer, we look forward to seeing it reaching more customers to boost their independence. 


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