Communicator Guides

Communicator Guides offer support to people who have developed sight and hearing impairments, often as they get older.

A female intervenor helps a deafblind man with his shopping

These difficulties can cause people to become increasingly withdrawn, depressed and isolated. But with the right help, deafblind people can live fulfilling lives at home and in the community.

The role of the Communicator Guide is to support the individual to do the things they want to do - not to do things for them.

They are there to act as the eyes and ears of the deafblind person – to make sure that communication is clear and that they are able to move around safely, using the right kind of guiding technique.

For example, this might mean:

  • Supporting someone to travel to the supermarket to do their weekly shop
  • Reading someone’s letters to them
  • Helping to set up a medical appointment and accompanying them to the hospital
  • Helping an individual to attend a social group where they can meet others with acquired deafblindness

The deafblind people that we support tell us that this can make a huge difference to their lives. Many describe how they feel their lives have opened up again and they can face the future with renewed confidence.

Communicator Guides are seen as a valuable addition to - rather than a substitute for - other services, such as a home help or social worker visits.

How to get a Communicator Guide

Sense provides Communicator Guides in some regions. They are also provided by some local authorities and other organisations. Some people choose to use their personal budgets to purchase services that enable them to remain connected to their family, friends and local community.

To find out more please contact Sense’s information and advice service who will put you in touch with the right team.

Following initial contact with Sense we will arrange a visit for an assessment by an advice worker. This will aim to identify the persons’ needs in discussion with them, and if appropriate, their family. We will then work with the individual to see how their needs can be met.

 

First published: Monday 14 May 2012
Updated: Monday 2 November 2015