Brain in hand - personal technology for independant living

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Alongside buying the system privately, we are approved by a number of Government schemes. Take a look through the ways people access Brain in Hand to find the right option for you.

If you need any additional advice, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.

Disabled Student Allowance

If you’re applying to do a higher education course at university, at the same time, you can apply for a Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA). To do this you will need a letter from your GP stating when you were diagnosed and crucially also how your diagnosis will impact your life at university.

Once awarded with your Disabled Students Allowance, arrange an appointment with a DSA Assessor near you. They will be able to work with you to plan what support will make the biggest difference to you, be it extra support, equipment or help with travel.

Brain in Hand is approved by Student Finance England to be purchased using your Disabled Students Allowance and so please ask your DSA assessor to request it. We have resources to help DSA assessors here.

After you have received your Needs Assessment Report and your DSA2 letter, in which Student Finance England approves your equipment, please complete our registration form to help us book you onto the Brain in Hand system.

Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP)

Many local authorities know about us and will provide funding for Brain in Hand students with an EHCP. The best starting point is to talk to your Special Needs Co-ordinator and ask them to help you to get Brain in Hand included in the EHCP. If they want to know more about us they can call us on 01392 247909.

Access to Work

If you are disabled, have a mental health condition or have a long-term health condition that impacts your ability to work, you may be eligible for the discretionary Access to Work grant scheme.

Run by Jobcentre Plus, Access to Work supports people aged 16 or over in a range of work situations. If you are in paid employment, self-employed, an apprentice, trainee, supported intern, doing self-directed work experience, or on a Jobcentre plus promoted work trial, you may be eligible for the discretionary Access to Work grant scheme.

The grant will allow you to purchase specialist equipment such as Brain in Hand to help you at work. You will need to speak to your employer to make sure they have made reasonable adjustments, then detail the challenges you face at work and how the Brain in Hand system can help.

To apply, complete this form An assessor will then be in touch to talk through your needs. We have lots of resources to help workplace assessors with Brain in Hand applications. These can be found here.

If approved, you or your employer can then purchase what is agreed and Access to Work will pay the money back, up to the amount of the grant you’ve been offered and with any contributions deducted, such as employer or NHS contributions.

Ask your support provider

More than thirty Local Authorities, Charities, Schools and Universities buy Brain in Hand for the people they support.

Why don’t you ask your provider if they can supply Brain in Hand as part of the support they offer you?

If they aren’t aware of Brain in Hand, please ask them to get in touch, as we can talk them through our system. They may not be aware that most organisations see cost savings and recover the cost of Brain in Hand within a year.

Ask them to call 01392 247909 or email

The Independent Living Fund (Scotland only)

The purpose of this new fund is to help young people, aged 16 to 21, living with disabilities, with the transition after leaving school or children’s services.

It provides money, for up to one year, for activities or support that will increase a young person’s independence. It can fund a device or piece of technology such as Brain in Hand, to help overcome problems that limit independence.

Applications are looked at on a case by case basis. Applicants need to have lived in Scotland for more than 6 months, have less than £26,250 in savings and have little or no social work support. Disabilities include people with autism, a learning difficulty, or mental health condition such as anxiety or depression.

All the information including the application form for the Independent Living Fund can be found here

The National Autistic Society Transition Support Service can support autistic young people, their parents and carer’s with their applications.

  • Brain in Hand has helped me to solve all sorts of problems by myself, which has really built my confidence. For example, I have an issue with eye contact when I talk with friends. To solve this, I plan in advance what I can say to a person, which is something I put into my Brain in Hand.

    Brain in Hand user

    Read our case studies ›
  • I wish that there had been something like this when I was a headteacher of a challenging school for those individuals who were either autistic or suffered from anxiety. It would have added another level of support.

    Parent of a Brain in Hand user

    Read our case studies ›
  • “We can use Brain in Hand to help people to achieve those outcomes and use the data from the system to demonstrate this: You put the same things into Brain in Hand that are being measured by the council.”

    Brain in Hand user

    Read our case studies ›

Latest News

Try. Learn. Improve.

Jane Stevens is Wigan Council’s Head of Assistive Technology, a role that has come a long way since she first moved into the field in 2005. With a background in mental health practice, she connected immediately with the vision of a future in which technology would give people greater control over their own lives and read more


Brain in Hand on BBC Click

BBC Click is the BBC’s flagship technology programme, appearing on five channels across TV and radio as well as online. It aims to provide a user-friendly guide to the latest technology news in the context of today’s important issues. In a recent episode, BBC Click examined a technological approach to helping autistic people manage their read more


Read all our news stories

Our case studies

Employable Me's Erica won't go to work without her Brain in Hand

Erica, 46 from the Wirral was diagnosed with Asperger syndrome when she was 32. She has been unemployed for the past six years. Erica finds social interaction at work hard, she feels people don't always understand her and sometimes see her as being less intelligent, because of her facial expressions. Read more >>

Read all of our case studies