A consumer works with staff to build independent living skills.

To make independent living a reality for Deaf and Hard of Hearing people (ages 18 and up), we offer advocacy, skills training, peer counseling, information, and referrals to help them make informed decisions about their lives.

The Deaf and Hard of Hearing Independent Living Services (DHILS) department offers a range of services to Deaf, DeafBlind, Hard of Hearing, and Late-Deafened adults in Greater Boston, the Northeast, North Shore, Southeast, South Shore, and Cape Cod and Islands regions. To see a map of DEAF, Inc.'s office locations, click here.

You can receive information and advocacy for a wide range of needs, including (but not limited to):

•  understanding and accessing legal aid, navigating the legal process for immigration and other issues;
•  working through the immigration process;
•  requesting reasonable accommodations (communication access, home assistive technology, hearing aids, etc.);
•  finding appropriate social services, including public assistance;
•  support with health insurance enrollment and understanding your policy;
•  access to healthcare;
•  support with housing;
•  support for parents with schools and children's services, including the Dept. of Children and Families;
•  emergency preparedness;
•  skills development workshops for adults and youth transitioning to adulthood and independence, including understanding and completing forms and letters and •  development of basic English and money management skills; and
•  navigating and using public transportation.

Independent Living Services for Seniors

If you are a Deaf, DeafBlind, Hard of Hearing, or Late-Deafened older adult (age 60 or older) living in the City of Boston, or a family member of an older adult with hearing loss, DEAF, Inc.'s Senior Independent Living Program can answer your questions about how to be safer at home with hearing loss and help you ensure your safety and independence. DEAF, Inc.'s Senior IL can also help you with questions about health, finances, and other issues, including finding equipment to cope with hearing loss. Please visit our Senior IL page to learn more.

Information and Supported Referrals

At DEAF, Inc.'s IL program, you and your family, friends or service providers can get answers to a wide variety of questions. We can provide information and supported referrals to other programs that can address your need. DEAF, Inc. also offers technical assistance and training for other providers (including medical professionals and local human service agencies) who want to improve accessibility of their services for Deaf, DeafBlind, Hard of Hearing, and Late-Deafened people. For links to resources and information about major programs and services serving the Deaf, DeafBlind, Hard of Hearing, and Late-Deafened community, including independent living services, please visit our Resources page.

If you would like to request IL services for yourself or someone else, click here.

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