Designing a Legacy
When industrial designer Ernie Meadows and his wife, Marj, lost their daughter, Ellen, Ernie decided to create a legacy to their daughter's memory. Ellen died in an automobile accident when she was 18 years old.
Originally Ernie intended to design a functional prosthetic hand for children and adolescent land mine victims. Over time he developed a design for a low-cost, light, durable, functional prosthetic hand. He knew that this would help all who need a prosthetic hand and who could not afford the available alternatives.
Our experience today informs us that those who benefit from the LN-4 hand may have been injured by landmines, work accidents, electricity, acts of violence, or a congenital condition.
In 2006 Ernie gave this prosthetic hand to Rotarian friends, specifically to the Ellen Meadows Prosthetic Hand Foundation, specifying that no one profit from the production or distribution and that no recipient be charged.
Recognising the enormous potential of the LN-4 hand as a team building tool, organisations across the world began using it to deliver purpose driven corporate events and the Helping Hands Program was born.
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Bringing the LN-4 to the UK
After experiencing the Helping Hands program for themselves, and bored of generic team building days, Mary committed to bringing the program and its benefits to the UK. Helping Hands UK is the sole licensed distributer of the LN-4 hand in the UK and only one of two in Europe as a whole.
Helping Hands UK is best described as a social enterprise. Led by Mary Cripps, the organisation is staffed by a small team of people passionate about having an impact on the world and creating a lasting legacy of inspired teams, better lives and more successful businesses. We put social impact ahead of profit and everything we do revolves around maximising our impact on the world.
Mary and her carefully selected team of associates bring with them strong backgrounds as senior business leaders, facilitators, strategists and developers of talent. When not working on changing the world, the team continue to be involved in business on a consultancy basis.
A global program
The Helping Hands Program has been successfully run across the world, delivered by our international partners; Helping Hands Program Australia and Odyssey Teams.
Helping Hands UK has joined its global partners and their clients in committing to a goal of building 20 000 hands by the end of 2020.
To see how we are progressing towards this goal, take a look at our live goal tracker. How will you contribute to helping us reach this ambitious target?