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North Dakota Dual Sensory Project

Ideas That Work logo of the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP)
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About Deaf-Blindness
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Sherri Nelson, Director
1321 S. 23rd St., Suite A
Fargo, ND 58103
701-239-7376 (Ofc)
701-239-7373 (Fax)


Deaf-Blind Resources

Communication Matrix Assessment Tool (October 29, 2012)

The North Dakota Dual Sensory Project and the South Dakota Deaf-Blind Project collaborated to provide training on the Communication Matrix assessment tool. This is an assessment of communication skills designed for individuals operating at the earliest stages of communication development. It accommodates all forms of expression and is helpful for individuals without conventional means of communication. A parent-friendly version of this instrument is also available in print and online at www.designtolearn.com

The objectives of the training:

  1. Participants will be provided with information regarding the communication matrix (an assessment tool).
  2. Participants will gain an understanding of the early reasons for communicating and how the child might communicate expressively.
  3. Participants will be able to use the communication matrix to develop strategies/goals for further development of communication skills.

Communication Matrix Powerpoint (4.3Mb pdf)

Additional helpful links:

American Association of the Deaf-Blind (AADB)
AADB is a national consumer advocacy organization for people who have combined hearing and vision impairments that promotes better opportunities and services for Deaf-Blind people.
8630 Fenton Street, Suite 121
Silver Spring, MD 20910-3803
301-495-4402: TTY
301-563-9107: Videophone
301-495-4403: Voice
301-495-4404: Fax
DB-LINK: The National Information Clearinghouse on Children Who are Deaf-Blind
DB-LINK is available to parents, educators, employers, service providers, consumers and other professionals. There is information on early intervention, education, health, legal issues, transition, IFSPs, IEPs, IYPs, post secondary education, medical, employment, inclusion, technology, recreation services, independent living, social support, parents, and families.
345 N. Monmouth Ave.
Monmouth, OR 97361
800-854-7012: TTY
800-438-9376: Voice
503-838-8150: Fax
The Family Center on Technology and Disability
The Family Center on Technology and Disability provides a wide range of resources on assistive and instructional technologies.
The Family Center on Technology and Disability
1825 Connecticut Ave. NW, 7th Floor
Washington, D.C. 20009
202-884-8068: Voice
202-884-8441: Fax
Family Voices of North Dakota (FVND)
Family Voice of North Dakota mission: Family Voices, a national grassroots network of families and friends, advocates for health care services that are family-centered, community-based, comprehensive, coordinated and culturally competent for all children and youth with special health care needs; promotes the inclusion of all families as decision makers at all levels of health care; and supports essential partnerships between families and professionals.
Family Voices of North Dakota was started in 1996 and became a State Chapter formally sanctioned by the national organization in the first quarter of 2001.
The FVND Health Information and Education Center: Assist families as they navigate public and private systems and insurance plans. Provide assistance to families in accessing services and resources for their children and how to partner with providers and caregivers. Listen to families as they describe their encounters with systems and help guide them to possible solutions. To work with families, health care providers, public and private agencies, and advocacy or support groups to promote family-centered care and medical homes for children with special health care needs. To promote discussion and linkages among families, providers, managed care programs, and government to better serve the health care and related needs of children and families in North Dakota.
PO Box 163
312 2nd Ave. W.
Edgeley, ND 58433
701-493-2634: Voice
701-493-2635: Fax
888-522-9654: Toll free
ND Parent to Parent
A project of Family Voices of ND is a statewide network of parents supporting families of children with developmental delays, disabilities, and special health needs. As trained supporting parents, we offer assistance in learning the necessary skills to help parents face the challenges of raising their child. We are not counselors or therapists. We are parents who have experienced the feelings and emotions that come after learning that our children have a developmental delay, disability, or other special health needs. We offer moral support and encourage parents to feel comfortable and optimistic about the future. Parent to Parent is dedicated to supporting families at their most challenging times and to celebrating each new victory. Parents helping parents, it's a simple concept that works. www.fvnd.org/nd_parent_to_parent
Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths and Adults (HKNC)
This national organization provides advocacy, assessment, consultation, community education, family support, professional training workshops, and information.
141 Middle Neck Road
Sand Point, NY 11050-1299
516-570-3626: Videophone
516-944-8900 Ext.253: Voice/TTY
516-944-7302: Fax
ND Assistive
ND Assistive (formerly IPAT) is a non-profit organization that strives to bring assistive technology into the lives of all North Dakotans that need it. No matter your age, needs, or disability, we are here for you.
3240-15th Street South, Suite B
Fargo, ND 58104
(701) 365-4728 Local
(701) 365-6242 FAX
1-800-895-4728 Toll-free
2401 46th Avenue, SE, Suite 203
Mandan, ND 58554
(701) 258-4728 Local
(701) 258-7474 FAX
1-800-895-4728 Toll-free
ND Hands & Voices
ND Hands & Voices is a non-biased support for families of children who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing.
PO BOX 5734
Fargo, ND 58105
701 484-1605
Email: handsandvoicesnd@midco.net
The Charge Syndrome Foundation
Provides support and outreach to families and individuals with CHARGE Syndrome. We also gather, develop, maintain and distribute information about the syndrome, along with promoting awareness and research regarding its identification, cause and management.
Email: info@chargesyndrome.org
Director of Outreach: 1-855-524-2743
National Family Association for Deaf-Blind (NFADB)
NFADB is a national network of families who focus on issues surrounding Deaf-Blindness and is a non-profit, volunteer-based family association. Our philosophy is that individuals who are deaf-blind are valued members of society and are entitled to the same opportunities and choices as other members of the community. NFADB is the largest national network of families focusing on issues surrounding deaf blindness.
NFADB exists to empower the voices of families of individuals who are deaf-blind and advocate for their unique needs.
141 Middle Neck Road
Sands Point, NY 11050
800-255-0411: Voice and TTY
516-883-9060: Fax
National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD)
It is a private not-for-profit organization dedicated to helping people with rare disorders and assisting organizations that serve them. Articles on over 4,000 rare diseases are available.
55 Kenosia Avenue, PO Box 1968
Danbury, CT 06813-1968
203-744-0100: Voice
800-999-6673: Voicemail only 203-797-9590: TTY
203-798-2291: Fax
National Center on Deaf-Blindness
The National Center on Deaf-Blindness: The Teaching Research Institute works collaboratively with families, federal, state, and local agencies to provide technical assistance, information and personnel training. NCDB brings together the resources of three agencies with long histories of expertise in the field of deaf-blindness. Center partners are: The Teaching Research Institute (TRI) at Western Oregon University, Helen Keller National Center, and Hilton/Perkins Program, Perkins School for the Blind.
800-438-9376: Voice
800-854-7013: TTY
503-838-8150: Fax
North Dakota Department of Public Instruction
This site includes information about programs and services, resources, grants, state standards, and education legislation.
Kirsten Baesler, State Superintendent
600 E. Boulevard Ave., Dept. 201
Bismarck, ND 58505-0440
701-328-2260: Voice
The ND Center for Persons w/Disabilities - Minot State University
NDCPD conducts a wide range of projects serving the disability community. Many of these projects are funded through grants and contracts with outside agencies. NDCPDs mission is to provide leadership and innovation that advances the state-of-the-art and empowers people with disabilities to challenge expectations, achieve personal goals, and be included in all aspects of community life.
Minot State University
500 University Ave. W.
Minot, ND 58707
North Dakota School for the Deaf/Resource Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing
Through a caring, nurturing, 24-hour residential and academic program and through outreach programming, the North Dakota School for the Deaf provides educational and social opportunities that assist all students to their fullest potential. Emphasis is placed on meeting the unique needs of each child, fostering positive values, good health, and community involvement, and encouraging each student to view learning as a lifelong endeavor in an ever-changing world.
The School for the Deaf has provided information, materials, assistance and support services to deaf and hard of hearing students and the citizens of North Dakota since 1890. Material resources include brochures, videotapes, a professional library, a depository of captioned videos, curriculums and assistive devices. Outreach/Parent-Infant services are the Family Learning Vacation, summer camps, tours and inservices and deaf awareness. Consultations and assessments are provided in audiology, psychology, speech, language, and sign language. Sign language instruction is also provided.
1401 College Dr. N.
Devils Lake, ND 58301
701-665-4400: Voice/TTY
701-665-4409: Fax
North Dakota Vision Services/School for the Blind
The North Dakota Vision Services/School for the Blind's mission is to function as a statewide comprehensive resource offering expertise in vision specific related areas (i.e., orientation and mobility, Braille, Braille music, daily living skills, technology, vocational, recreation and leisure), for persons of all ages by enhancing the local programs and working cooperatively with related agencies in providing a full range of services to all persons who are blind or visually impaired, including those with multiple disabilities.
500 Stanford Rd.
Grand Forks, ND 58203
701-795-2700: Voice
800-421-1181: Voice
Paul Olson, Superintendent
The Office of Special Education Program (OSEP)
OSEP is dedicated to improving results for infants to adolescent, children and youth with disabilities ages birth 21 by providing leadership and financial support to assist states and local districts.
800-USA-LEARN (800-872-5327)
800-437-0833: TTY
PathFinder Parent Center
The PathFinder Parent Center is a statewide nonprofit organization. It was started in 1987 by a small group of ND families. These parents received a grant from the US Dept. of Education to become NDs statewide parent training and information center. Today they serve over 2000 parents of children that are at risk due to learning challenges or have disabilities (age birth -26). The mission is to unite families and educators by giving them the resources to build positive futures for and with children, students, and young adults with learning differences or challenges.
PathFinder Parent Center
1600 2nd Ave. SW
Minot, ND 58701-3459
701-837-7501: TDD
701-837-7548: Fax
Perkins School for the Blind
Perkins School for the Blind provides education and services for children and adults around the world who are blind, deaf-blind, or visually impaired.
175 North Beacon Street
Watertown, MA 02472
617-924-3535: Voice
QuitDay.org and Wheelchair Foundation
QuitDay.org and Wheelchair Foundation supports the physically challenged to become smoke-free and lead heathier lives.
The world's largest charity working and campaigning for Deaf-Blind people, their families, and professionals who work with them.
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