Community & News
Deaf News-Hawaii is a mailing list that was established in 1999 to provide the Deaf community with news and information. For the latest community information and events, subscribe to the Deaf News Hawaii Facebook or email blast.
Special Olympics is founded on the belief that people with disabilities, who are at least eight years old, with proper instruction and encouragement, can learn, enjoy and benefit from training, participating and competing in individual and team sports, adapted as necessary to meet the needs of those with special mental and physical limitations. Special Olympics also permits individual programs to accept children from age six to seven for training, but these children may not compete.
A Web site developed by a deaf-blind man that is full of information and links to “make people more aware about deafblindness.”
American Association of the Deafblind (AADB) is a national consumer advocacy organization for people who have combined hearing and vision impairments. It is open to all persons who are deafblind and individuals directly concerned with their well being, including spouses, children, friends and health professionals. AADB provides technical assistance to persons who are deafblind, families, educators, and service providers through direct onsite assistance to consumers at the adult level in the subject areas of community living, curriculum, social skills, and technology.
AFB’s mission is to enable people who are blind or visually impaired to achieve equality of access and opportunity that will ensure freedom of choice in their lives. AFB accomplishes this mission through agency-wide program initiatives and through the delivery of a wide variety of products and services.
The Hawai‘i & Pacific Deaf-Blind Project provides technical assistance to children and youth who are deaf-blind, birth through 21 years of age, and to their families and service providers here in Hawai‘i and outlying Pacific Island nations/jurisdictions of American Samoa, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Federated States of Micronesia (Kosrae, Pohnpei, Chuuk, and Yap), Guam, Republic of Palau and Republic of the Marshall Islands.
NCDB is home to DB-LINK, the largest collection of information related to deaf-blindness worldwide. A team of information specialists makes this extensive resource available in response to direct requests, via the NCDB web site, through conferences and a variety of electronic medium.
Deafblind International (DbI) is a world association that supports and promotes the development of services to enable a good quality of life for deaf-blind children and adults. DbI brings together professionals, researchers, families, deaf-blind people and administrators to raise awareness of deaf-blindness.
The Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (LBPH) provides services to U.S. citizens statewide and is part of two library systems: the Hawai’i State Public Library System and the National Library Service for the Blind & Physically Handicapped, Library of Congress. LBPH serves as the regional library and machine lending agency for the blind and physically disabled throughout the state and the outlying Pacific Islands.
The Hawai‘i Association of the Blind (HAB) is an affiliate of the American Council of the Blind. They strive to advocate independence, equality and opportunities for the blind in Hawai‘i.
The Helen Keller National Center serves adults who are deaf-blind and provides support services for youth and adults who are deaf-blind, their families and the professionals who serve them across the country. Their mission is to enable each person who is deaf-blind to live and work in their community of choice.
- 516-944-8900 (main switchboard)
- 516-944-8637 (TTY)
- 866-351-9089 (videophone)
The National Center on Deaf-Blindness is home to a wealth of information. Use the Selected Topics section in the Library to find articles and NCDB products.
The National Consortium on Deaf-Blindness (NCDB) is a national technical assistance and dissemination center for children and youth who are deaf-blind. NCDB conducts initiatives and activities to increase the capacity of state and local early intervention and education agencies to improve policies and practices for children and youth who are deaf-blind; promote the use of evidence-based practices; and increase the capacity of families to develop relationships with fellow families, service providers, and others, and expand their knowledge of deaf-blindness and skills in self-advocacy and self-empowerment.
This national organization provides support to families through advocacy, information, resources, referral, supports, national policies, encourages founding and strengthening state family organizations, assists professionals in development of materials and training seminars and publishes “News from Advocates for Deaf-Blind.”
Phone: (601) 388-7578
Perkins School for the Blind is an innovative leader in serving people with visual impairments. Perkins is committed to providing education and services that build productive, meaningful lives for children and adults around the world who are blind, deaf-blind or visually impaired with or without other disabilities.
Sense was established in 1955 out of a family support group made up of parents whose children were born with rubella. It is a national charity that supports and campaigns for children and adults who are deafblind.
The Special Education Section (SES) of the Department of Education focuses on the need of students with disabilities. Special education is specially designed instruction to meet the unique learning needs of students who require individualized education programs. Special education services (e.g. speech and language therapy, occupational therapy, etc.) may be delivered in a variety of settings based on the student’s needs.
The Hawaiʻi School for the Deaf and Blind (HSDB) is a public education facility that provides statewide services to students that are deaf, blind, and deaf-blind. The HSDB’s array of services are designed to assist each student in the target populations to maximize his or her potential with high expectations of success including support services by uniquely qualified personnel, support for families, post-secondary transition services and adapted educational materials.
The Comprehensive Student Support System (CSSS) provides overarching support to the standards-based curriculum and programs. CSSS is based on the belief that given the appropriate support and interventions, every student will learn and succeed. It links students and families to the resources of the Department of Education, as well as those of their neighborhood, their community and other governmental and private agencies, emphasizing proactive, timely prevention and intervention services.
Financial, Food, and Medical Assistance
Medicaid is the United States health program for certain people and families with low incomes and resources. It is jointly funded by the state and federal governments, and is managed by the states. People served by Medicaid are U.S. citizens or legal permanent residents, including low-income adults, their children, and people with certain disabilities. The Hawai’i Med-QUEST Program (QUEST) is a Medicaid managed care program where the State pays health plans to provide coverage of medical and mental health services. Dental Services are provided on a fee-for-service income Hawai’i residents since January 1966. The program provides coverage for individuals who are age 65 and over, or under age 65 who are blind or disabled. All other individuals are covered by QUEST.
Learn about hearing aid benefits available through Medicare Advantage Plans
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a Federal assistance program designed to provide income to aged, blind, or disabled people who have limited assets with which to support themselves. The SSI program is managed by the Social Security Administration (SSA), but financed by the general tax fund. Because the program is not financed by Social Security taxes, there are no work requirements necessary to qualify for SSI.
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is a federal program funded through the U.S. Department of Agriculture. As of October 1, 2008, SNAP is the new name for the federal Food Stamp Program. Each state administers a SNAP.
Keiki & Ohana Resources
The American Society For Deaf Children’s resource page offers tools for families who’d like to help their child learn ASL. One website, BabySignLanguage.com, has a great list of flashcards with usage tips for successful memorization. The page also includes an ASL rhymes video, a list of recommended apps to help children and adults learn ASL, and a link to MyALSTech, which offers a large online ASL dictionary with conceptual graphics.
Children with Special Health Needs Branch (CSHNB) works to ensure that all children and youth with special health care needs will reach optimal health, growth, and development, by improving access to a coordinated system of family-centered health care services and improving outcomes, through systems development, assessment, assurance, education, collaborative partnerships, and family support.
The Early Intervention Section (EIS), otherwise known as the 0-3 Program, of the State Department of Health is a program that provides developmental services for any eligible child from birth to three years of age in five areas: physical, cognitive, communication, social or emotional and adaptive. Services are available on all islands and there is no cost to families.
The Hawaiʻi Keiki Information Services System (H-KISS) is a free information and referral service of the Early Intervention Section. A care coordinator can help answer questions and get your child evaluated for developmental delays or other special needs, get needed services (like speech therapy and physical therapy), and link to other parents and services (such as child care, family support, respite, and community services).
Public Health Nursing Branch (PHNB) administers the public health nursing services statewide. The staff of PHNB is made up of Public Health Nurses, who are Registered Nurses, Licensed Practical Nurses, Para-medical Assistants, and Health Aids in the public schools. Public Health Nursing services are focused on public health issues which include care coordination services for infants and toddlers for EIS and facilitate access to services for special needs populations with medical/health and their caregivers.
The Special Parent Information Network (SPIN) is a parent to parent organization in Hawaiʻi that provides information, support and referral to parents of children and young adults with disabilities and the professionals who serve them. SPIN tries to keep families of a child with a disability linked to important information through its annual conference, quarterly newsletter, legislative updates, Special Education Advisory Council, fact sheets and parent guidebook.
The Sibling Support Project is a national effort dedicated to the life-long concerns of brothers and sisters of people who have special health, developmental, or mental health concerns.
The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), is a federally funded program which provides Hawaiʻi residents with nourishing supplemental foods, nutrition education, breastfeeding promotion and health and social service referrals. The participants of WIC are either pregnant, breastfeeding, or postpartum women, and infants and children under age five who meet income guidelines and have a medical or nutritional risk.
Wonderbaby.org, a project funded by Perkins School for the Blind, is dedicated to helping parents of young children with visual impairments as well as children with multiple disabilities. It has a database of articles written by parents who want to share with others what they’ve learned about playing with and teaching a blind child, as well as links to meaningful resources and ways to connect with other families. Additional resources such as Dots for Tots, Seedlings and NBP for free/cheap Braille books can be found on the Wonderbaby.org website.