Do It Myself Blog – Glenda Watson Hyatt

Motivational Speaker

Gift Ideas for Youth with Disabilities

Filed under: Living with a disability — by at 9:06 pm on Sunday, November 18, 2007

A beautifully wrapped gift
(Photo credit: Irum Shahid)

A friend’s severely physically disabled daughter received two boxes of Kleenex from her grandma for her Sweet Sixteen birthday. No doubt the grandma dearly loved her granddaughter and had good intentions, but had no clue what to give a young woman who is able to physically do very little. How heartbreaking for both of them.

With the Season of Giving now upon, friends and relatives are now facing the same dilemma: what gifts to give to youth with disabilities? Here are a few suggestions to get ideas percolating; of course, consider youth’s disability, ability and interests when deciding whether a suggestion is suitable:

  1. Clothes. We all wear them! Depending on the child’s abilities and mobility, elasticized waists and zippers or Velcro, rather than buttons or snaps, would be greatly appreciated. Adapted clothes, such as from Kutaways, Mini-Miracles Children’s Clothing, WheelieChix Chix and Easy Does It (more for adults), may foster greater independence in dressing.
  2. Wall posters of their favourite hotties or current interests, whether it be Christina Aguilera or Nick Carter or anyone in between.
  3. Music CDs and, of course, something to play them on; for example, switch-adapted boom box with CD player. How cool is that! Or, even better yet, an iPod speaker system with a remote – forget fumbling with CDs and jewel cases!
  4. Books are great for expanding one’s world. For those with print disabilities, large print, audio books or electronic books may be appreciated.
  5. Make-up and jewelry: a must for all teenaged girl! Great tips for adapting a make-up kit. For the young men with disabilities, shaving kits and related items.

For younger ones with disabilities on your list, here are a few other ideas and resources:

By giving some thought to the individual’s interests and abilities, as well as to the disability, there are many gift ideas that are more exciting to give and to receive than a box of Kleenex! What ideas can you add to the list?

Note: The companies and products mentioned here are offered as suggestions, as a starting point. I have not had any dealings with them. If you have dealt with companies, your comments on their products or on further gift ideas are most welcomed. Happy giving!

If you enjoyed this post, consider buying me a chai tea latte. Thanks kindly.

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Comment by Karen Putz

November 19, 2007 @ 6:53 am

Another thing to consider is paying for a day at Chuck e Cheese or an arcade– something my youngest kid LOVED when he was five!

Comment by Glenda

November 19, 2007 @ 11:04 am

Awesome idea, Karen! Sounds like fun.

Comment by Avril

November 21, 2007 @ 9:20 am

Glenda, you are a fount of helpful information!

Comment by jennifer gallienne

November 23, 2007 @ 8:25 am

Thanks Glenda for including our information on your blog!!!

Jennifer Gallienne

“helping people in motion maintain their quality of life”


July 4, 2009 @ 4:11 am

Yours is a very informative blog. Thanks for providing this wonderful content.

Gifts are source of happiness to both the giver and the recipient. Thanks for the ideas.

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