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Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Deaf Connect launches home care-first for Perth seniors

A significant milestone in accessibility for Deaf seniors in WA has been marked with the launch of the state’s first Auslan-delivered home care package by Deaf Connect last week.

The ‘Ageing Well’ package is an approved provider of in-home care for seniors – funded under the Federal Government’s Home Care Package program – which delivers essential aged care services and support to Deaf, deafblind, and hard-of-hearing Australians.

Ageing Well currently operates in Queensland, NSW, the ACT and South Australia.

Deaf Connect CEO, Brett Casey said the launch of the program in Western Australia represents a significant milestone in the delivery of accessible and culturally relevant home care services for the Deaf community.

“The Ageing Well program encourages active, healthy ageing, ensuring that Deaf seniors remain connected to their communities by being able to receive Aging Well services directly in their language – Auslan.”

“By respecting their identity and culture, we make sure that our clients feel valued and understood.

“This is an important step in meeting the communication and support needs of Perth seniors, ensuring they maintain their quality of life and wellness,” said Mr Casey.

In November, Deaf Connect hosted two information sessions in Perth to engage with the local community and gather feedback and insights on their needs. The overwhelming response underscored the urgent demand for Auslan home care services in WA, the organisation says.

Deaf Connect General Manager for Ageing Well, Dr Leena Vuorinen, said the new home care package would specifically cater to the needs of Deaf seniors in WA.

“The goal of the program has always been to ensure seniors can stay in their homes for longer – promoting their independence, nurturing social connections, and sustaining a high quality of life”, Dr Vuorinen said.

“Empowering seniors in the Deaf community involves providing Auslan-based aged care services that prioritise independence, physical well-being, and community support. By offering tailored care plans in their own language, we enable seniors to maintain control over their lives while effectively addressing their physical and emotional needs.

“Our commitment is to ensure that every Deaf senior can age with dignity, supported by a strong community that celebrates their identity and values their autonomy.”

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