Promising Practices for Deaf Services Conference Registration


Thursday, May 11, 2017
8:00am – 3:15pm
Best Western Royal Park Plaza
181 Boston Post Rd.
Marlborough, Ma. 01752
Registration for this event is full. Please complete the form below to be added to our wait list and we will notify you if more space becomes available.


WORK Inc.’s Deaf outreach, support, and consultation team invite you to join us at our free Conference for Service Coordinators, Supervisors and Provider Agencies that serve, or want to serve Deaf and Hard of Hearing individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities.




Our keynote speaker is Tim Riker. He is a second-generation deaf person, American Sign Language educator, advocate, Certified Deaf Interpreter (CDI), mentor, and presenter. He currently works at Brown University teaching ASL and Deaf Studies. He is also a Chair of Rhode Island Commission on the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.



Steve the Deaf Magician, Steve Weiner


We will also have a special treat at lunch. We will be entertained by a magic show done by Deaf
Magician Steve Weiner.





 Session 1

10:30am – 11:30am

Workshops - Click workshop for more information

April Smith – DEAF, Inc., Carol Hilbinger – DEAF. Inc., Julie Proud – MRC, Mitch Sanborn – MCB, Kristin Johnson – MCDHH

This workshop will provide participants with an overview of various community and state resources available to help or assist Deaf and Hard of Hearing overcome specific barriers and maximize personal and employment goals. A panel representing various agencies will present services available to individuals and families in a friendly atmosphere to assure participants feel comfortable locating the right resources for Deaf and Hard of Hearing individuals.

Joe Toledo and Devon M. Hostetler– DEAF, Inc,

What is Deaf Culture? This workshop will explain the complicated relationship between hearing loss, language and culture. Deaf Culture affects how individuals greet each other, how they say goodbye, how to get others attention, deciding the language of expected social interactions. Participants will learn the differences between the “hearing perspective” and the Deaf Culture perspective”. This session will provide practical information that can be utilized during a daily basis.

Kristen Piccolo, Le Pho, Amanda Neal, Pathway Participants -WORK Inc.

Pathways to Careers is a multi-state customized employment model developed and managed by the Institute for Economic Empowerment at Source America. Pathways is a zero exclusion, strength based employment program design that uses discovery, visual resumes, paid internships and systematic instruction to develop employment opportunities for people with disabilities. This presentation will focus on the inclusion of three Deaf individuals that were randomly selected for participation in the first cohort. The presentation will focus on the strategies that were put into place to support their inclusion in the national project, along with sharing their visual resumes, successful internships and job placement to date.

Session 2

11:45AM – 12:45AM

Workshops - Click workshop for more information

Sharon Smith, Work, Inc., Joe Donati, WCI

This work shop will discuss how two agencies changed their corporate culture to support the inclusion of Deaf participants and Deaf staff to effectively work with Deaf, Hard of Hearing, Late Deafened and Deaf-blind adults in the community. They will discuss the evolution of inclusion in their respective agencies sharing strategies on how they created a culture that supports the recruitment, hiring, and training of Deaf staff. This will include a brief history of the origins of the agencies including Deaf Supports and some of the many lessons that were learned as part of that journey.

Catarina Lima, Matthew Castiglione, Yacine Ndiaye, April Smith – D.E.A.F. Inc.

This session will start with some of the possible effects of isolation and lack of social recreational opportunities and what options are available. There will be discussion of what does accessibility means and what is a reasonable accommodation. A variety of different accessible social and recreational opportunities/activities will be identified that can promote connection, interaction, relationship building and reduce isolation. The outcomes of this session will include understanding why ongoing isolation can contribute to depression and loneliness, identifying and suggesting activities to decrease isolation and locating Deaf and Hard of Hearing accessible events.

Mikey Kranjiak – MCDHH

In this session participants will learn the nuts and bolts of using interpreters. This will cover a wide range including how to arrange for interpreters, different kinds of communication access, types of interpreters, benefits of using a Certified Deaf Interpreter (CDI), how to conduct interpreted meetings and other general knowledge. This session is a must for anyone confused about what kinds of access is needed and when it must be provided.

Session 3

2:15pm – 3:15PM

Workshops - Click workshop for more information

Stephanie Reynolds-King – Pathways for Change – Deaf Survivor Program, Mary Bird, LCSW – ODSC

Our Deaf Survivors Center and Deaf Survivor Program will discuss the roles of each agency. Both Agencies do serve the deaf communities and the roles are different: Our Deaf Survivors Center works with both Sexual Violence and Domestic Violence, and Deaf Survivor Program works with only Sexual Violence populations. The agencies will discuss barriers in the deaf communities and why is it happening and we will discuss what our agencies can do for the communities that works with Deaf, late deaf, hard of hearing, deaf blind.

Sandra Bass, Samantha McDonald, Nikki Akunwafer, Wendy Clemmy – DEAF, Inc

This workshop provides tools that can be used when communicating with Deaf and Hard of Hearing who aren’t proficient in ASL. Different skills, ideas and communication strategies will be provided such as the use of visual aids, gestures and other methods. The learning outcomes for this session include: a better understanding of using multiple communicative strategies to use during interaction conversations with Deaf and Hard of Hearing individuals, knowing how to use body language and gestures and how to be able to identify a range of tools to use with non-ASL fluent individuals.

Rohan Wickramartne, Alex Avram – WORK Inc.

This workshop will provide best practices for supporting individuals who are Deaf in residential setting. The presentation will include communication access, unique training needs for Deaf Staff in the areas of MAP, PBS, and other topics. It will also include ways to make information more accessible by changing your documents to be more ASL friendly. Participants will learn how to identify communication needs and how to plan for interpreters, the need to hire Deaf Staff, the support and training needs of Deaf Staff and how to develop a system of supports for Deaf individuals.


Wait list

Wait list promising practices for deaf services