If your holiday shopping list includes someone who is living with ALS or a caregiver, we’ve compiled a list of gift ideas to help. Our support services team contributed these recommendations from their experience providing resources and support to people living with ALS and their families. Depending on where your friend or loved one is in their ALS journey and what their needs might be, items that help make daily activities easier may be a good place to start.
By selecting the Les Turner ALS Foundation as your charity of choice on AmazonSmile, 0.5% of all your eligible purchases will be donated to the Foundation.
From virtual support visits to entertainment, tablets and speech assistants can make a big difference. Karen Raley Steffens, RN, CHPN, CCM, a support services coordinator, recommends tablets or Amazon ECHO Dots, while Anne Marie Doyle, MA, CCC-SLP, with her extensive experience as a speech language pathologist, suggests boogie boards (writing tablets) and voice amplifiers.
- iPads or other tablets
- Gift cards to buy communication apps: Google Play Gift Card, Apple Gift Card
- Google Home Products
- Boogie Board (writing tablet)
- Amazon Alexa/Home products
- Voice Amplifier
If you’re shopping for someone who uses a wheelchair, there are plenty of great experiences available in the Chicago area. Rochelle Walwer, LCSW, a support services coordinator, recommends memberships to places like the Morton Arboretum or Chicago Botanical Garden, which have accessible trails, and accessible theater tickets.
- Subscription to Audible for audiobooks
- Subscription to Spotify for podcasts/music
- Memberships to Chicago Botanical Garden or Morton Arboretum
- Broadway in Chicago Accessible Theater tickets
Capturing those memorable moments:
Sometimes a fresh set of photos or a simple greeting card can mean the world. Rochelle recommends Wi-Fi digital photo frames as a great way to display photos and share with family and friends.
- Gift certificate to photography studio or home photography session
- Legacy box kit to digitize family photos and home videos
- Storyworth book writing kit to record memories and stories
- Wi-Fi enabled digital photo frame to send and display photos
- Milestone cards for birthdays, holidays, etc.
Everyone deserves a little time for pampering. Easton Stevenson, LCSW, a support services coordinator, recommends warm blankets for sitting or being in a wheelchair. Gift certificates to a spa or salon are also a great option for more in-depth relaxation.
Making daily life a little easier:
Living with ALS changes a lot about day-to-day routines, and simple things can help make those activities less of a challenge. Julie Stowell, RN, a support services coordinator, recommends the Giraffe drinking system because its unique design makes drinking water a breeze. Rochelle recommends adaptive clothing, which can be found at places like Target and Tommy Hilfiger.