The Service Foundation for the Deaf
Sign language services for deaf and deafblind people
The Service Foundation for The Deaf has seven Service Centers, which provide housing services and home services in sign language for deaf and deafblind clients of different ages. The staff members speak sign language and have knowledge on deafness and deafblindness. This creates a basis for the social, mental, and physical welfare of the residents. A sign language speaking environment with solutions of information and interaction applied to it, strengthens peer support and the common action of people who share the same language background.
The Service Centers provide preparation for work and other work activities to promote the clients’ knowhow. In service housing, everyone participates in the common household chores according to his/her abilities. Some centers co-operate with different work activity centers and other communities. The Ratamotie Group Home in Oulu concentrates on commercial gardening. The Sampola work activity center in Hämeenlinna is the only work center in Finland that functions using sign language.
Each client has An Individual Service Plan
Each client has different needs of service as they are defined in an individual service plan. The plan is made together with the client, his/her family members, and different co-operation partners such as various local authorities in the person’s municipality of residence. The first plan is made after the period of experimenting and preparation. It is checked and rewritten annually.
The evaluation criteria in services paid by the municipalities used are price, quality, and flexibility of services, multiple qualifications of staff, and the clients’ general satisfaction with the situation.