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DeafBlind Services Minnesota

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Welcome to DeafBlind Services Minnesota

DeafBlind Services Minnesota provides one-to-one services to children and adults with significant vision and hearing loss, often known as deafblindness or dual sensory loss. Our offices are in Minneapolis and we provide services throughout Minnesota thanks to Support Service Providers, Independent Living Skills staff, and interveners.

 

For over 30 years, our specialists have provided community-based support and services to people who are deafblind. Deafblindness affects all facets of life: access to information, communication, relationships, mobility, community integration and independent living, to name a few. Because each deafblind individual has unique needs, challenges and abilities, most of our services are one-to-one and highly personalized. Generally, our consumers want to have more access to information, better-quality communication with others, and more independence and self-sufficiency.

 

DeafBlind Services Minnesota is a limited liability corporation (LLC) of Vision Loss Resources.

 

Celebrating civic engagement at Deaf, DeafBlind and Hard of Hearing Day!

DeafBlind Services Minnesota was honored at the Minnesota State Capitol on March 8, 2017, as part of Deaf, DeafBlind and Hard of Hearing Day.

The Commission of Deaf, DeafBlind, and Hard of Hearing Minnesotans (MNCDHH) presented DeafBlind Services Minnesota and Minnesota DeafBlind Association with a joint award for Civic Engagement.

Diane Lentsch (Adult Community Services Lead at DBSM) accepted the award on behalf of DBSM; here is her acceptance speech:
On behalf of DeafBlind Services MN, thank you so much for the MNCDHH Award for Civic Engagement— a joint award shared with Minnesota DeafBlind Association (MDBA).
Deafblindness is a disability of lack of access to information. Over the years I have learned that providing access and involving people who are deafblind in the legislative process is the true grassroots of change.
 
But it is the DBSM staff team—Kimberly Williams, Paul Deeming and our direct service community SSPs and ILS workers who do the work. None of this would have happened without the DBSM team.
The award is about DBSM services and I am honored to accept the award on behalf of DBSM.

Congratulations to DBSM, MDBA and our community!

Children, Youth and Family Services

We provide support, information, referral, training and advocacy to deafblind children and their parents, family, educators and other service providers. The Children, Youth and Family Services program serves children ages 0 to 21 in Minnesota. Our interveners are trained staff who work with deafblind children so that they may learn about their environment and community, meet childhood developmental goals, and develop communication strategies. Interveners assist families with techniques for communicating with their child, developing appropriate expectations of and for their child, and collaborating with educators, schools, and service providers.

For more information about or to make a referral to the Children, Youth and Family Services Program, please contact Anna Kohrs at 612-843-3401 (voice), 612-440-4966 (video phone), or anna@dbsm.org.

 

Adult Community Servicestwo women doing beading at the community center

Adult Community Services provides community support to self-determined deafblind adults age 22 and up, living throughout Minnesota. Support Services Providers (SSPs), who are trained to work with the unique needs and communication styles of deafblind adults, assist them with activities of daily living such as grocery shopping, banking, running errands, reading mail and filling out forms. They also assist deafblind persons with accessing their community life and information in their environment.

For more information about or to make a referral to Adult Community Services, please contact Diane Lentsch at 612-843-3440 (voice), 612-362-8422 (TTY), 952-388-2102 (video phone), or lentschd@dbsm.org.

 

Independent Living Skills Training

DeafBlind Services Minnesota provides Independent Living Skills Training and support to deaf, hard of hearing, blind and deafblind consumers who are eligible for Medicaid Home and Community-based Waivered Programs including Community Access for Disability Inclusion (CADI) and Elderly Waiver (EW).

For more information, or if you have a referral for CADI or EW services, please contact Paul Deeming at 612-843-3442 (voice and TTY), 952-388-2102 (video phone), or pauld@dbsm.org.

 

Adjustment to Blindness/Deafblindness training

We offer a variety of training activities and classes focused on the unique needs of deafblind people. This training is offered through the Rehabilitation Center at Vision Loss Resources. Referrals are typically made by a consumer’s State Services for the Blind counselor.

 

DeafBlind Services Minnesota is funded by: