Prime Minister David Cameron was today on hand to help support gaming charity SpecialEffect as it opened the country's first fully-accessible gaming centre.
"The work of SpecialEffect brings together three things that I am passionate about: helping those with disabilities, the innovative use of technology and corporate social responsibility," said Cameron.
The centre will allow disabled people within the community and across the UK to enjoy video games and, as one SpecialEffect patron pointed out, discover new ways that video games can help with their rehabilitation.
"Following my rugby injury, I was totally paralysed. SpecialEffect's support adapted a computer that I could operate just by moving my head," said Matt Hampson.
"This not only had a massive positive impact on my leisure time but I also believe it helped to build up my neck muscles, too. Like me, many other people with disabilities are interested to find out about the benefits of games and leisure technology for socialisation, rehabilitation and, of course, fun. Now they drop into a friendly centre and can see what it can do for them."
The opening reflects Cameron’s ongoing support for SpecialEffect, a charity he has backed for the last three years.
"The work of SpecialEffect brings together three things that I am passionate about: helping those with disabilities, the innovative use of technology and corporate social responsibility. I began supporting SpecialEffect when I attended their launch in 2008 and I've been continually impressed with their commitment to helping disabled people," he said at opening.
"This new centre will enhance the quality of life for some of the most severely disabled people across the UK and I will continue to support SpecialEffect as their local MP. It's also good to see SpecialEffect working so closely with the UK's video games industry – it's a great example of how even a small input from business can help support the fantastic work that SpecialEffect do."
Prime Minister Cameron and his wife Samantha lost their eldest son, Ivan, in 2009. Ivan was six and suffered from cerebral palsy and epilepsy.