SSP 101

SSP 101

Photo of a deafblind man with a cane walking with his SSP at the light rail stationIn 2016, two courses were created for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services Division at the State of MN to teach Support Service Providers and deafblind consumers on the importance of providing supports for the deafblind community.

1. Support Service Provider 101 – Working with People Who are DeafBlind: People with combined hearing and vision loss often need special supports and assistance to live independently. Support Service Providers (SSPs) occupy a unique position in the world of direct support services by acting as the eyes and ears of someone who is deafblind.

This 3-hour course uses the personal experiences of two people with combined hearing loss and the SSPs who assist them to help learners understand the real impacts of hearing and vision loss on daily life and independence. Learning content is presented in simple, easy to understand language and is supported by video role plays and simulations, exercises, and more than 50 instructional videos.

Photo of a deafblind woman signing with her SSPTopics include: An overview of hearing and vision loss, its causes and functional impacts; the SSP’s role and common responsibilities; best practices; adult protection requirements and HIPAA regulations; privacy concerns, fraud and other ethics concerns.

2. SSP 101: Using Support Service Providers: A one-hour companion course for consumers teaches people who are deafblind about the SSP role, their role as an employer, funding sources, how to define their requirements, and best practices for identifying, interviewing and hiring potential SSP candidates. The personal experiences of two people with combined hearing loss and the SSPs who assist them help to bring the topics to life.

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