DBCAN provider reads the contents of a shopping list to a DeafBlind woman using tactile ASL

With the support of her DBCAN Provider, a DeafBlind consumer reviews her grocery shopping list.

The DeafBlind Community Access Network (DBCAN) program works to empower DeafBlind people to increase and sustain their independence in the community. DBCAN’s services are available to DeafBlind adults in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

DBCAN was established in 2001 by members of the DeafBlind and Deaf community, the DeafBlind Interpreter Allies (DBIA) and DEAF, Inc., and with support from the Massachusetts Legislature, the Massachusetts Commission for the Blind (MCB), and the Massachusetts Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (MCDHH).

DBCAN matches DeafBlind adults with trained Providers who assist with accomplishing everyday tasks, such as:

•  reading mail and other printed materials;
•  exercising and participating in fitness programs;
•  using the MBTA and other modes of transportation;
•  running personal errands (bank, hair salon, shopping, and more); and
•  attending community, cultural, educational, recreational, and religious events

All DBCAN Providers complete a 45-hour specialized training, including understanding DeafBlind perspectives, communication skills, guiding techniques, and confidentiality. Providers are matched with consumers according to consumer needs and preferences.