People with autism or other chronic diseases generally are prone to sensory physical and disorders. They are particularly sensitive or insensitive to light, colour, sound, touch, etc. and hence, their daily lives are greatly affected. Realising that good designs help improve lives, Hong Kong Design Institute (HKDI) students join hands with special needs members and occupational therapists from St James‘ Settlement to co-design and co-create several innovative and appealing furniture and healthcare equipment to bring positive life changes.
In order to obtain sensory stimulation, autistic children often have repetitive behaviours. This modular sofa set is designed to make limitless combinations possible, developing a safe indoor mini playground so as to increase the pleasure of interaction. With high flexibility, all the parts including cushions, backrests, armrests and even sofa bases, can be independently assorted to fulfil individual needs. When the sofa base is reversed, it becomes a slanted shelf. Covered with rough fabric, it can be used to train the users’ vestibular and proprioceptive senses.